US Senate passes bill on aid for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan

US Senate passes bill on aid for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan

On Tuesday, the upper house of the U.S. Congress passed H.R. 815, a bill providing aid to Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan, as well as a response to other challenges to US national security.

The document was supported by the overwhelming majority of American lawmakers, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.

Thus, 79 senators voted in favor of the draft law, while 18 voted against.

On Tuesday, the Democratic majority in the Senate conducted a rapid review of the foreign aid package that had been passed by the House of Representatives the previous week. The document was introduced to the upper chamber as H.R. 815, an amended bill that had already been voted on by the Senate in February. The amendments to the current version primarily relate to the content of the so-called "fourth" bill from the package that had been adopted by the House of Representatives. In particular, it includes the seizure of frozen Russian assets, the introduction of additional sanctions against Russia and Iran, restrictions on the Chinese app TikTok, etc.

Nevertheless, the Senate's consideration and vote on foreign aid could have again been at risk of being delayed. Republican Senator Mike Lee, who has repeatedly opposed aid to Ukraine, also tried to impede the process this time. It was also important for lawmakers in the Senate to decide on the procedure for reviewing the bill to avoid a 30-hour debate period before the main vote. In this case, the passage of the bill could be possible only on Wednesday evening.

There was also another threat that could have further delayed the approval of the document. In particular, independent Senator Bernie Sanders said the day before that he insisted on introducing two amendments. The first related to the establishment of restrictions on military aid to Israel. The other was to resume funding for the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) for its work in the Gaza Strip. If these amendments were adopted, the Senate would have had to send the document back to the House of Representatives, which is on recess this week.

However, thanks to the efforts of Senate Democratic Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, all this was avoided on Tuesday.

As reported by Ukrinform, last Saturday the US House of Representatives passed a massive package of bills providing foreign aid to Ukraine, Israel, Taiwan, and responding to other challenges to America's national security. The total amount of foreign aid appropriations is $95 billion, including more than $60 billion for Ukraine. After the approval by the Senate, the legislative initiative will be sent to the U.S. President for his signature.

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