After a months-long stalemate, the U.S. House of Representatives approved an aid package for Ukraine worth just over $60.8 billion. Now that the green light has arrived from the House, all that remains is the vote of the Senate (which, barring any surprises, should approve the bill) and therefore the signature of President Joe Biden. Since the Russian invasion in February 2022, the US Congress has approved a total of $113 billion for Ukraine. But in reality, this figure has stagnated since the end of 2023, with Republican legislators stubbornly opposing the sending of new aid. Since the start of the year, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has repeatedly called on the American Congress to unblock the new aid plan, under penalty of definitive defeat by Vladimir Putin's army.

Breaking the deadlock

What complicated the negotiations was above all the intransigent position of the wing of the Republican Party led by Donald Trump. But after months of stalemate, House Speaker Mike Johnson accepted his Democratic Party colleagues' invitation for collaboration, defying the extremist wing of his own party. According to New York Times, the bet of recent days could cost Johnson his seat. The final version of the bill is also expected to include a requirement for the Ukrainian government to repay the United States $10 billion. An innovation strongly demanded by Trump, who has said in recent days that he is willing to grant aid to kyiv, but only in the form of loans.

Aid to Israel and Taiwan

The $60.8 billion in aid to Ukraine is just one of four bills approved today by the U.S. House of Representatives. The other three concern: 26 billion dollars to Israel (including 9 for humanitarian aid and 5 for air defense), 8 billion dollars to Taiwan and, finally, the possibility of using frozen Russian assets and imposing new economic sanctions against Moscow, Tehran and Beijing.

The ban on TiKTok

The latest bill actually contains another trip to China: the possible ban on TikTok. The measure, strongly supported by the Republicans, was approved by a very large majority: 360 votes for and 58 against. The provision requires the sale of the social platform by the current owner, the Chinese ByteDance, under penalty of banning the application throughout the United States. The first reaction to the vote in the US House of Representatives came from TikTok. The Beijing-controlled company says a possible ban on the app in the United States would “violate the freedom of expression” of 170 million Americans.

On the cover: Volodymyr Zelensky and Joe Biden on the White House lawn (EPA/Michael Reynolds)

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