US Announces $1.5 Billion in New Aid for Ukraine at Swiss Peace Summit

US Announces $1.5 Billion in New Aid for Ukraine at Swiss Peace Summit
Vice President Kamala Harris (L) shakes hands with Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky during a meeting on the sideline of the Summit on peace in Ukraine, at the luxury Burgenstock resort, near Lucerne, Switzerland, on June 15, 2024. (Alessandro Della Valle/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

The Biden administration has unveiled a new $1.5 billion aid package for Ukraine’s energy sector and humanitarian situation as the embattled nation attempts to fend off Russia’s attack.

The latest tranche includes $500 million in new funding for energy assistance and the redirecting of another previously announced $324 million in funds toward emergency energy infrastructure repair, through U.S. Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).

Vice President Kamala Harris announced the new assistance package while attending the Ukraine Peace Summit in Lucerne, Switzerland, where she met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

“This funding will repair energy infrastructure damaged in the war, expand power generation, encourage private sector investment, and protect energy infrastructure,” USAID said in a statement on Saturday.

“These efforts will help Ukraine respond to Russia’s latest attacks on Ukraine energy infrastructure by supporting repair and recovery, improving Ukraine’s resilience to energy supply disruptions, and laying the groundwork to repair and expand Ukraine’s energy system.”

Ms. Harris also unveiled at the summit that more than $379 million in humanitarian assistance from State and USAID will be provided to Ukraine to help address “urgent needs of refugees, internally displaced persons, and conflict-affected communities” impacted by the ongoing conflict.

According to the Biden administration, this money is to further expand food assistance, health services, shelter, water, sanitation, and hygiene services for “millions of vulnerable Ukrainians” throughout the country.

“The assistance also includes support for comprehensive protection activities, including case management and psychosocial support services, as well as agriculture and livelihoods assistance to enable families to restore income and meet their basic needs,” USAID said.

Ms. Harris also announced that, in a joint effort with U.S. Congress, the State Department plans to provide an additional $300 million in Ukrainian civilian security assistance to support life-saving equipment for Ukrainian border guards and law enforcement.

She said this endeavor will assist Ukrainians in safely operating on the front lines of the war to defend the country’s territory, rescue civilians, and protect critical infrastructure.

Since the start of the war over two years ago, the United States has devoted nearly $1.5 billion to help Ukraine’s energy sector and enable it to produce clean and reliable energy, according to USAID.

Ms. Harris and national security adviser Jake Sullivan are standing in for President Joe Biden at the event. The president will be just ending his participation at the G7 summit in Italy and returning to the United States to attend a fundraiser for his reelection campaign.

President Biden met with Mr. Zelenskyy at the G7 summit, where they signed a U.S.–Ukraine bilateral security agreement, and in France for events surrounding the 80th anniversary of the World War Two D-Day invasion.

Sullivan will represent the United States at the summit on June 16 and help establish working groups on returning Ukrainian children from Russia and on energy security.

Reuters contributed to this report.