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Ukraine's MoD holds talks with head of Pentagon, Lloyd Austin

Ukraine's MoD holds talks with head of Pentagon, Lloyd Austin Photo: Rustem Umerov, Minister of Defense of Ukraine (Vitalii Nosach, RBC-Ukraine)

Ukrainian Minister of Defense Rustem Umerov held a phone conversation with his American counterpart Lloyd Austin. They discussed a range of issues, including the Ramstein meeting, according to the Twitter account of the Ukrainian Minister of Defense.

"Had a productive weekly call with Secretary Lloyd Austin. Discussed recent security developments and Ukraine’s, Future Defense Force structure updates and capability coalitions frameworks within Ukraine Defence Contact Group," writes Umerov.

According to the Pentagon press service, the parties also discussed planning for future Ramstein meetings. "Both leaders pledged to maintain close contact," the Pentagon adds.

Challenges with U.S. financial aid for Ukraine
In October of this year, President Joe Biden requested over $106 billion from Congress for national security needs, including new military assistance funding for Ukraine amounting to over $61 billion.

On December 6, the Senate blocked the start of debates on the military aid package due to a demand from the Republican party to include a tougher set of measures to protect the southern border with Mexico.

Republicans and Democrats have begun negotiations to reach a compromise. More details on why the U.S. cannot reach an agreement on aid to Ukraine can be found in the material by RBC-Ukraine.