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Trump vows to make Europe pay for U.S. military Ukraine aid if re-elected

by Martin Fornusek and The Kyiv Independent news desk July 19, 2023 12:56 PM 2 min read
Former U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during an event at the Mar-a-Lago Club April 4, 2023 in West Palm Beach, Florida. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
This audio is created with AI assistance

U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump said on July 18 that if elected, he will ask Europe to cover the U.S. costs of restoring stockpiles of weapons sent to Ukraine.

"I will ask Europe to reimburse us for the cost of rebuilding the stockpiles sent to Ukraine, which they should be doing now, but Joe Biden is too weak, too disrespected," the former president said in his campaign video.

Trump complained that European countries spend less than the U.S. on their aid for Ukraine, and criticized the incumbent President Joe Biden for "emptying out" the country's military stockpiles.

He also attacked the foreign policy of the Biden administration. Trump said that the idea of admitting Ukraine to NATO at this time is "completely unhinged," and that the U.S. is risking nuclear war with Russia or China.

In spite of Trump's insinuations, Biden said that Ukraine cannot join the Alliance while at war, and Kyiv has not yet received a membership invitation.

The Republican candidate who served as the 45th president vowed to return the U.S. to the "America First" policy, and to work to restore "peace and stability" in Eastern Europe and to "stop people from dying."

Trump is currently the most popular Republican candidate in the upcoming primaries for the 2024 presidential election, according to opinion polls. As many as 48% of the respondents will support him in the primaries, while 22% will back Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, a poll published by YouGov and the Economist on July 8-11 revealed.

The former president claimed on July 17 that if re-elected, he would be able to restore peace between Russia and Ukraine.

"I would tell Zelensky, no more. You got to make a deal. I would tell Putin, if you don't make a deal, we're going to give him a lot. We're going to (give Ukraine) more than they ever got if we have to," Trump said, adding that "he will have the deal done in one day."

Trump has previously criticized the Biden administration for spending too many resources on supporting Ukraine.

Ukraine gets a fraction of what it wanted at NATO summit
Ukraine collected many promises at Vilnius, except the one it craved the most. In a joint communique, the 31 NATO member states said Ukraine’s future is in the alliance, which it will one day join. They got rid of the need for a Membership Action Plan, effectively reducing the number
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