House

Blinken, Austin to brief House members on Russia-Ukraine conflict

Brendan Smialowski/Pool via Associated Press - Associated Press/Alex Brandon

Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin will lead a classified briefing for House members on Thursday about the ongoing tensions between Russia and Ukraine.

Blinken and Austin will be joined by Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley, according to a notice sent to members.  

Officials from the departments of Treasury, Commerce and Homeland Security, as well as the United States Agency for International Development, will also participate, the notice said.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) requested the briefing last week, though her office didn’t provide further details of the request at the time.

Senators are also expected to receive a briefing from senior administration officials on Thursday, a Senate aid confirmed to The Hill on Sunday.  

Russia has amassed at least 100,000 troops near its border with Ukraine, according to U.S. intelligence, and the Biden administration has warned that the threat of a potential military incursion is “imminent.”  

The Kremlin has denied any intentions of invading Ukraine, and protecting the former Soviet state from an incursion has become a rare bipartisan point on Capitol Hill.

The Pentagon has put 8,500 troops on heightened alert to prepare for a potential deployment in Eastern Europe. President Biden said Friday that he would send a small number of U.S. troops to the region in the “near term.”  

Meanwhile, the administration is prepping sanctions on Russians with ties to the Kremlin that would be triggered if Moscow invaded Ukraine.

Tags Antony Blinken Avril Haines Joe Biden Lloyd Austin Mark Milley Nancy Pelosi

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