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14.04.22

SPRINGFIELD — Today, U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH), co-chairs of the Senate Ukraine Caucus, along with U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D- NH) and Roger Wicker (R-MS), sent a letter to President Biden urging him to appoint a Ukraine Security Assistance Coordinator. In light of continued fighting in Ukraine, as the United States continues to send historic aid to assist Ukraine in its defense, senators believe a coordinator would help synchronize efforts across our government and to improve our response time in sending aid to Europe. .

“Even after their initial defeat, Russia’s ongoing military operations are an urgent call to reassess how the United States can quickly and creatively supply Ukraine with the defense items it needs to defend itself. . The Ukraine Security Assistance Coordinator’s primary mission would be to lead the interagency effort to assess Ukraine’s defense needs while dissolving overlapping areas of jurisdiction between the State Department and the Department of Defense. This individual would also serve as the primary liaison between the United States government and our allies and partners overseas on matters relating to the transfer of existing stockpiles and the assessment of partner capabilities, such as aircraft, heavy tanks and the sophisticated weapons that could be made available. to Ukraine, write the senators.

The full letter can be read here or below.

Dear President Biden:

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is entering its seventh week after the Ukrainian Armed Forces successfully repelled the initial Russian campaign targeting kyiv in a bid to overthrow the government of President Zelenskyy. Recent reports on the repositioning of Russian Federation troops in Donbass indicate that this conflict is not over and that there will likely be much more fighting in the future, which will require our continued support to the armed forces. Ukrainians. In order to reinforce Ukraine’s victories on the battlefield and help it decisively defeat Russian aggressors, we must focus on improving how we synchronize our whole-of-government approach to arming Ukraine. . This effort requires someone to coordinate our efforts and we urge you to immediately appoint a Ukraine Security Assistance Coordinator for this purpose.

Even after their initial defeat, Russia’s ongoing military operations are an urgent call to reassess how the United States can quickly and creatively supply Ukraine with the defense items it needs to defend itself. The Ukraine Security Assistance Coordinator’s primary mission would be to lead the interagency effort to assess Ukraine’s defense needs while dissolving overlapping areas of jurisdiction between the State Department and the Department of Defense. This individual would also serve as the primary liaison between the United States government and our allies and partners overseas on matters relating to the transfer of existing stockpiles and the assessment of partner capabilities, such as aircraft, heavy tanks and the sophisticated weapons that could be made available. to Ukraine.

In addition, this coordinator could serve as a liaison with our national industrial partners who are called upon not only to ensure the constant flow of defense articles to Ukraine, but also to replenish American and allied stocks. Finally, the Ukraine Security Assistance Coordinator would develop and execute a whole-of-government response regarding the capabilities and capability needs of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, including any necessary updates to the Security Assistance Resource Plan. security, as required by section 1236 of the fiscal year 2021. National Defense Authorization Act (PL 116-283).

We commend your administration thus far for providing unprecedented levels of support to Ukraine and for ensuring that these needs are met quickly. We also recognize that more can be done, and the appointment of a Ukraine Security Assistance Coordinator would streamline the overall effort while increasing transparency. It is imperative that we continue to provide our Ukrainian partners with the defense equipment they need to successfully defend their freedom and their homeland against Russian invasion.

We appreciate your consideration of this request and look forward to continued engagement to ensure Ukraine has the tools and resources to win this war decisively.

Sincerely,

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