Ukraine hails US military aid as cease-fire said to falter
Ukraine's president praised the United States for including tank-killing armored vehicles in its latest multibillion-dollar package of military aid, saying they are "exactly what is needed" for Ukrainian troops locked in combat against Russian forces, even as both sides celebrated Orthodox Christmas on Saturday.
The White House announcement Friday of $3.75 billion in weapons and other aid for Ukraine and its European backers came as Moscow said its troops are observing a short Orthodox Christmas cease-fire.
Ukrainian officials denounced the unilateral 36-hour pause as a ploy and said it appeared to have been ignored by some of Moscow's forces pressing ahead with the nearly 11-month invasion. Ukrainian officials reported Russian shelling attacks in the Dnipropetrovsk and Zaporizhzhia regions on Saturday.
Russia's Defense Ministry insisted Saturday that its forces along the 1,100-kilometer (684-mile) front line were observing the Kremlin-ordered truce, but returned fire when attacked.
The latest package of U.S. military assistance was the biggest to date for Ukraine. For the first time, it included 50 Bradley armored vehicles and 500 of the anti-tank missiles they can fire. Germany also announced it would supply around 40 Marder armored personnel carriers and France promised wheeled AMX-10 RC tank destroyers.
Together, this week's pledges were powerful signals that Ukraine can count on continued long-term Western aid against Russian President Vladimir Putin's drive to dismember the country.
In his nightly televised address on Friday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy hailed the U.S. aid package as "very powerful."
"For the first time, we will get Bradley armored vehicles — this is exactly what is needed. New...
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