US announces $215 million in new food aid to Ukraine
Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Wednesday that Ukraine will be getting $215 million in emergency food assistance, with more aid expected in the future.
During a United Nations meeting on global food security, Blinken noted the “greatest global food security crisis of our time” caused by factors such as the pandemic and climate, adding that the war in Ukraine has exacerbated the issue.
“Today, given the urgency of the crisis, we’re announcing another $215 million in new emergency food assistance. And we’ll do much more,” Blinken said.
“We expect our Congress very soon to approve approximately $5.5 billion in additional funding for humanitarian assistance and food security,” he added.
The $5 billion for food assistance to Ukraine comes from the $40 billion Ukraine aid bill that passed the House last week.
The aid package to Ukraine advanced in the Senate on Monday, with a vote on final passage expected later this week, before it goes to President Biden’s desk.
The World Bank said Wednesday it will give $30 billion to combat food insecurity around the globe.
The Russia-Ukraine war has impacted food supply in certain regions of the world, as exports from Ukraine have stalled during the conflict.
Ukraine exported more than $6 billion worth of agricultural products in 2020 to the European Union alone.
A United Nations official said earlier this month that there is reason to believe Russian is stealing Ukraine’s grain supply during the war.
“There is anecdotal evidence that Russian troops have destroyed storage capacity and that they are looting the storage grain that is available,” United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization senior official Josef Schmidhuber said. “But that’s all anecdotal evidence. There is no statistical data for that.”
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