Portman, Shaheen Announce Increased Funding for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative Passes as Part of FY 2022 National Defense Authorization Act
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) announced that the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative has been extended through 2022 and its funding has been increased from $250 million to $300 million per year, with at least $75 million specifically for lethal assistance, as part of the FY 2022 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). These funds are used to help train, equip, and provide support for the Ukrainian government in their effort to defend their territory and autonomy against ongoing Russian aggression.
“In the face of increased Russian aggression against Ukraine, I am pleased to see this extension and increase in security aid to our ally Ukraine and I’m proud it’s included in our annual defense authorization bill. It is clear that the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative provides our allies in Ukraine with the assistance that is critical in defending their sovereign territory – on the land, sea, and air,” said Senator Portman. “I’m proud to have led the effort in Congress to secure this crucial funding and will continue to work with Senator Shaheen and my colleagues in Congress to ensure the United States continues to stand with Ukraine in their fight to secure a democratic, prosperous, and independent future.”
“Combating Russian aggression has long been one of my top priorities in the Senate, but it’s even more important now given Russia’s deliberate and alarming military buildup along Ukraine’s border. Shoring up the security of key regional allies like Ukraine is our best defense against Putin’s provocative and destabilizing behavior,” said Senator Shaheen. “I’m pleased funding to bolster Ukraine’s defensive capabilities passed as part of the NDAA in the Senate, which is the most recent congressional action in support of our Ukrainian partners in this legislation. Today, the Senate sent unified, bipartisan messages that Putin will be held to account for his malign activities, and the U.S. will equip our allies with the tools necessary to protect their territorial integrity from anti-democratic threats in the region.”
For the past five years, Portman successfully championed language in the annual NDAA that expanded U.S. military aid to Ukraine, while strongly encouraging the Ukrainian government to continue their efforts in eliminating corruption and continuing with much needed security sector reforms. These provisions helped build the primary statutory framework for U.S. security assistance to Ukraine, the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative. In addition, he has repeatedly written letters, delivered multiple floor speeches, and pressed senior administration officials on the importance of providing meaningful assistance to help Ukraine stand up to Russia’s military aggression, and has pressed successive administrations to provide lethal assistance to the country.
For his efforts to support Ukraine, Portman was recognized with the Order Of St. Volodymyr Medal from Ukrainian Patriarch Filaret. Senator Portman has also received the Order of Merit from former President Petro Poroshenko during his visit to Ukraine in 2018 and the Ukrainian-American community’s highest honor in 2016, the Shevchenko Freedom Award.