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Pentagon overestimated value of weapons for Ukraine by $3bn

Pentagon overestimated value of weapons for Ukraine by $3bn

The Pentagon overstated the value of weapons sent to Ukraine by $3 billion in an accounting error that could affect the depletion of current funds to arm the war-torn country, according to people familiar with the matter.

One of the people said the error occurred by incorrectly using the cost of replacing weapons sent from US stock with new equipment, rather than the purchase price plus depreciation. Reuters first reported the Pentagon’s overstatement of the value of aid to Ukraine.

Last year, Congress approved $48 billion in aid for Ukraine, including $21.7 billion for military equipment and money to replace Pentagon weapons that have already been sent to the country.

Some lawmakers believed those funds would run out by the end of the summer. US officials told the Financial Times they would last until October, although it’s unclear how the error might alter that timeline.

From Russia large scale invasion began in February 2022, the United States committed some $37 billion in lethal aid to Ukraine, such as Javelin and Stinger missile systems, heavy artillery, tanks, air defense battery Patriot and other air defense systems. Much of this sum comes from US stockpiles, but it also includes funds for arms contracts.

It will be up to the White House to decide when to request further assistance for Kyiv. Washington and its allies have sent military aid to Ukraine ahead of a planned counteroffensive that they hope will help it gain momentum in the war.

But some of Ukraine’s allies are worried about what will happen when current funds run out, with senior European officials growing concerned about the flow of aid next year as the United States enters a divisive presidential campaign.

“The Department of Defense’s change in the costing of weapons sent to Ukraine is a major mistake,” said Roger Wicker, the Republican senator from Mississippi.

He added: “It would have the effect of underestimating the future needs of our European allies. Our priority should be a Ukrainian victory over [Vladimir] Cheese fries. Unilaterally changing military aid calculations is an attempt to deceive and undermines this objective.

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