(Bloomberg) -- President Joe Biden is planning to call allies to reassure them that US support for Ukraine will continue, according to people familiar with the matter.
The call could take place as early as tomorrow, said the people, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss private matters.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Monday she had no calls with allies to preview “at this time.” The US has communicated with partners since the war’s outbreak and “that’s going to continue,” she told reporters during a press briefing.
She said the US would announce another support package for Kyiv from the previously approved tranche “soon” in order to “signal our continued support.”
Biden’s outreach comes as $6 billion in military aid for Ukraine fell by the wayside as US lawmakers passed measures to avert a government shutdown, raising concerns among some allies that US support could falter.
The Pentagon has “exhausted nearly all available security assistance funding for Ukraine” and a funding gap would delay or curtail urgent needs, including air defense and ammunition, Comptroller Michael McCord said in a letter to House Democrats last Friday.
Asked about how much longer current funding levels for Ukraine would last, Jean-Pierre said “it is enough to for us to meet Ukraine’s urgent battlefield needs for a bit longer.”
Biden previously said that he expects Speaker Kevin McCarthy to keep his word and secure passage of support for Ukraine.
The US has supplied some $44 billion in security assistance to Ukraine since Russia’s invasion in early 2022. The Biden administration requested a further $24 billion as part of a supplemental spending package in August.
Less than two weeks ago, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy visited the US Capitol to plead for new weapons systems and continued financial and military support.
--With assistance from Justin Sink.
(Updates with quotes from Jean-Pierre in third, fourth and seventh paragraphs)
©2023 Bloomberg L.P.