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Pentagon announces $2 billion Ukraine air defense package

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) -The U.S. Department of Defense announced the latest in a series of aid packages for Ukraine on Friday, an additional $2.1 billion in security assistance that it said included critical air defense and ammunition capabilities.

The package includes additional munitions for Patriot air defense systems, Raytheon HAWK air defense systems and missiles, 105mm and 203mm artillery rounds, AeroVironment Puma unmanned aerial systems, laser-guided rocket system munitions and support for training and maintenance, the Defense Department said in a statement.

Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI) funds will be used to purchase the weapons, allowing President Joe Biden’s administration to buy weapons from industry rather than pull them from U.S. stocks. Delivery of the weapons and systems depends on their availability and production timeline.

(Reporting by Patricia Zengerle; Editing by Doina Chiacu)

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