(Bloomberg) -- UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron urged US Congress to approve billions of dollars in support for Ukraine in its war against Russia, saying failure to do so risked emboldening Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Senate Republicans on Wednesday blocked $66 billion in emergency aid to Ukraine, raising the prospect that US funding to the war-torn nation will dry up amid a partisan stalemate in Washington. Cameron, the former prime minister who made a shock return to the UK Cabinet last month, told the Aspen Security Forum that he’s worried Western nations are “not going to do what we need to do” to shore up Ukraine.
“If that money doesn’t get through, there are only two people that will be smiling: one of them is Vladimir Putin in Russia, the other one is Xi Jinping in Beijing,” Cameron said. “I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to give either of those two a Christmas present.”
Cameron’s comments reflect growing concerns in Britain and Europe more widely that US interest in funding Ukraine’s war effort is waning. He noted that money spent so far hadn’t been wasted because it had “destroyed half of Russia’s pre-war assets,” and warned that if the US aid package isn’t passed by Congress, it may affect the commitment of other European nations.
Read More: Ukraine Funding Fight Stokes New Fears Over US Reliability
“If you vote through this package, however you do it and whatever you have to connect it with in Congress, it will give an enormous fillip to those European countries,” he said. “The impact of this vote in Congress will be huge because it will enable those of us that really want to get behind Ukraine for the next year, to go to all the other European countries and say ‘right, you’ve seen what the US have done, now we all need to join in.’”
US President Joe Biden has accused Republicans in Congress of “playing chicken with our national security” and on Wednesday, he joined a call with other Group of Seven leaders, including UK prime Minister Rishi Sunak, where they reaffirmed their “steadfast commitment” to supporting Ukraine. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy also attended.
“European security is also American security, and we should stay united on this, we should pass this money to the Ukrainians, we should back them and make sure that it’s Putin that loses,” Cameron said.
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