World Bulletin / News Desk
The U.S. will provide Ukraine "enhanced defensive capabilities" to help the country defend its territorial integrity, the State Department said on Friday.
"The United States has decided to provide Ukraine enhanced defensive capabilities as part of our effort to help Ukraine build its long-term defense capacity, to defend its sovereignty and territorial integrity, and to deter further aggression," spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a statement.
Nauert said the assistance is "entirely defensive in nature", adding: "As we have always said, Ukraine is a sovereign country and has a right to defend itself."
She added Washington has been committed to the Minsk agreements as the way forward in eastern Ukraine.
The department did not give further details.
Following the statement, citing State Department sources, ABC News reported that U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to announce his approval of a plan to sell anti-tank missiles to Kiev.
According to ABC News, the total defense package of $47 million includes the sale of 210 anti-tank missiles and 35 launchers.
Ukraine has been wracked by conflict since March 2014 following Russia’s annexation of Crimea after an illegal independence vote.
The UN General Assembly voted to proclaim the Russian annexation illegal.
Along with many UN countries, the U.S., the EU and Turkey also do not recognize Crimea as Russian territory.
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