President of the United States Donald Trump for several months rejected the recommendations of his assistants to start supplying arms to Ukraine, and when he agreed, he insisted that Kiev pay for it. This is stated in the material published on Thursday by the NBC television channel.
According to its sources from among officials in the US administration, the American leader feared that this step would lead to an escalation of the conflict in Donbass. The publication says that Rex Tillerson, who earlier this month was fired from the post of US Secretary of State, urged Trump to start delivering weapons.
"Officials said Tillerson had scheduled a meeting with the president to discuss the plan shortly after it was approved by a group of national security specialists last summer, he [Tillerson] raised this issue in meetings with Trump in the next few months, says the material. According to NBC, "the [US] president expressed concern that this would lead to an escalation of tension with Russia and provoke a wider conflict."
Sources of the channel note that Trump regarded Ukraine as a problem for the European Union and "wondered why he should do something about this." In addition, Trump, as stated in the publication, "insisted that Ukraine acquired weapons from the United States, and did not receive it for free."
"Tillerson simply exhausted him," the White House employee quoted the television station as saying.
As noted in the material, Trump later announced to his National Security Assistant Herbert McMaster, whose resignation was announced last week, that the decision to supply weapons to Kiev could lead to the outbreak of war in Ukraine. On the argument that the war in this country is already going on, the American leader replied that the US does not participate in it.
At the end of December 2017, State Department spokesman Heather Nauert announced that the United States had decided to supply Ukraine with "advanced defensive means" in the framework of Washington's efforts to strengthen the country's defense capability. In early March, the US Department of Defense's Department for Defense Cooperation and Security announced that the Trump administration had made a decision to sell Javelin ATGM to Ukraine for a total of $47 million: 210 missiles and 37 launchers. The statement said that these supplies "will contribute to the maintenance of foreign policy and national security of the United States by strengthening the security of Ukraine."
DONi News Agency