Zelenskyy thanks US after House passes aid bill

Zelenskyy thanks US after House passes aid bill

The House swiftly approved roughly €89 billion in foreign aid for Ukraine, Israel and other US allies in a rare Saturday session as Democrats and Republicans banded together after months of hard-right resistance over renewed American support for repelling Russia’s invasion.

With an overwhelming vote, €57 billion in aid for Ukraine passed in a matter of minutes, a strong showing as American lawmakers race to deliver a fresh round of US support to the war-torn ally. Many Democrats cheered on the House floor and waved blue-and-yellow flags of Ukraine.

Aid to Israel and the other allies also won approval by healthy margins. The whole package will go to the Senate, which could pass it as soon as Tuesday. President Joe Biden has promised to sign it immediately.

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine said he was “grateful” to both parties in the House and “personally Speaker Mike Johnson for the decision that keeps history on the right track,” he said on X, formerly Twitter.

“Thank you, America!” he said.

EU leaders welcomed the bill's passing. EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said "Ukraine deserves all the support it can get against Russia. Now, we are asking the US Senate to vote as quickly as possible as lives are at stake."

NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said that the bill "demonstrates the continued bipartisan support for Ukraine. This significant boost in aid will supplement the aid being provided by European Allies".

Russia was unhappy with the ruling. Russian Foreign Minister spokeswoman Mariya Zakharova said "US military aid to Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan will exacerbate global crises: aid to the Kiev regime is a direct sponsorship of terrorist activities; to Taiwan - an interference in China's internal affairs; to Israel - a direct road to escalation in the region".

Kremlin's spokesman Dmitriy Peskov claimed that "This will further enrich the United States of America and will bankrupt Ukraine even more".