US President Joe Biden asked Congress today for $33 billion to support Ukraine, an increase in US funding for the war against Russia, as well as new legal tools to toughen it up. sanctions and divert assets from Russian oligarchs.
The broad funding request includes more than US$20 billion (approximately R$99.4 billion) in weapons, ammunition and other military assistance, in addition to US$8.5 billion (about US$42.2 billion) in economic assistance. direct to the government and 3 billion dollars (about 14.9 billion) in humanitarian and food security assistance.
“We need this bill to support Ukraine in its fight for freedom,” Biden said at the White House. “The cost of this fight is not cheap, but giving in to aggression will be more expensive.”
Biden is also looking to get more money from Russian oligarchs to pay for the war effort.
The proposal would have lawmakers hand over new capabilities to their government, allowing US officials to seize more assets from oligarchs, hand over the money from those seizures to Ukraine and further criminalize sanctions evasion, the White House said.
The measures include allowing the Justice Department to use the strict US extortion law, once enacted against the mafia, to craft cases against people who evade sanctions.
Biden also wants to give prosecutors more time to build those cases, extending the statute of limitations on money laundering cases to 10 years instead of five. It would also make it a criminal act to withhold money knowingly taken from corrupt dealings with Russia, according to a summary of the proposals.