US aid to Ukraine

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President Joe Biden’s latest security assistance package for Ukraine includes surveillance drones and for the first time mine-resistant vehicles, a senior US defence official said on Friday.

Since Russian troops poured over the Ukrainian border in February in what Russian President Vladimir Putin termed a “special military operation,” the conflict has settled into a war of attrition fought primarily in the east and south of Ukraine.

The official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the package would be valued at $775 million and also include additional ammunition and 16 105mm Howitzer systems.

Russia, Ukraine trade blame for dozens of deaths in Donetsk prison destruction. The package would include 15 Scan Eagle surveillance drones, 40 MaxxPro MRAP (mine resistant ambush protected vehicles) and about 1,000 Javelin anti-tank missiles.

While this is the first time the United States is providing Scan Eagle drones, another country has provided them to Ukraine in the past, the official said, without elaborating.

Meanwhile, nine Ukrainians, including four children, were wounded Saturday after Russian forces attacked an apartment block and several houses in the city of Voznesensk, near a key nuclear plant, a regional governor said.—Agencies

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