VILNIUS - The stalled US aid to Ukraine is an unpleasant circumstance, Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte says. However, she and Defense Minister Arvydas Anusauskas believe it will eventually be approved.
Their comments came after Republican senators on Wednesday blocked a White House request for a 106 billion US dollar (97.4 billion euro) joint emergency aid package for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan, as Republicans objected to the bill's lack of immigration reforms.
"This is a problem because, on the one hand, there doesn't seem to be any doubt at the rhetorical level about the aid as, in general, there is a majority in favor of aid to Ukraine in the Senate and in the House of Representatives, in the Congress, (...) and it is a great pity that this issue, and not only of Ukraine, but also of Israel and of the overall aid package, it has become a hostage of domestic politics," the prime minister told reporters on Thursday.
She has no doubt that the aid package would be approved if it was put on the agenda.
"But it simply is not put the agenda. This is a very unpleasant circumstance, but I still think it is a circumstance, not a decision, but just a circumstance, and that sooner or later the decision will reach the voters and then the vote, I believe, will be a positive one," the prime minister said.
The defense minister said he discussed the issue with Republican senators during his recent visit to the United States and was assured that the issue would be resolved by mid-December.
As the Russian war in Ukraine continues, the aid issue will continue to be an issue in all countries, Anusauskas said.
"Yes, there are many domestic problems, but the Ukraine issue and the war in Ukraine and Russia's actions are destroying the international order, and if it collapses, it will cost tens of times more than it is now," the minister said.
Without US support, "it would be difficult for Ukraine", he said. Nevertheless, he remains optimistic on the issue and has no doubt that aid provision will be resumed.