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US asks its forces in South Korea to give weapons to Ukraine
The U.S. Defense Department has asked its troops deployed in South Korea to supply Ukraine with military equipment, the U.S. military said on Jan. 19, as cited by Reuters. U.S. Forces Korea (USFK) didn't specify what equipment and how much has been requested or already delivered.
According to USFK, which has about 28,500 service people in South Korea, such a request is a part of U.S. efforts to help Ukraine with its supplies.
"This has zero impact on our operations and our ability to execute on our ironclad commitment to the defense of our ally, the Republic of Korea," said USFK spokesman Isaac Taylor.
The New York Times reported on Jan. 17, citing unnamed American and Israeli officials, that the U.S. had been supplying Ukraine with its munitions stored in South Korea and Israel. Both countries have publicly committed not to provide Ukraine with lethal weapons.
According to CNN, the United States is finalizing a $2.5 billion military aid package to Ukraine, including Stryker combat vehicles, in "one of its largest" military aid packages to Ukraine since the start of the full-scale invasion in February of last year.
Ukraine has also asked for American Abrams tanks, but the U.S. is not expected to announce their delivery to Ukraine in its next package, reportedly due to maintenance and training issues with the tanks rather than fears of escalating the war.