Johnson plans separate House votes on Israel, Ukraine aid

U.S. House Speaker Mike Johnson plans to hold separate votes this week on new assistance packages for Israel and Ukraine, aiming to assemble fragile coalitions to support both embattled allies.

This move seeks to overcome Republican resistance to aid Kyiv and address the recent missile and drone attack by Iran on Israel. By capitalizing on the sense of urgency among many U.S. lawmakers to stand with Israel following the attack, Speaker Johnson aims to gauge the resolve of ultraconservative factions in blocking aid to Ukraine, Bloomberg reports.

Republican Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia has threatened to trigger a vote to remove the speaker if any assistance to Ukraine is considered in the House.

On April 15, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said at a briefing that "we will not accept a standalone" Israel aid bill. "A standalone would actually not help Israel and Ukraine. It would actually delay ... the needed aid," Jean-Pierre noted, calling for the House to pass the Senate's $95 billion Israel, Ukraine, and Taiwan aid bill.

The United States' delay in providing assistance to Ukraine has directly affected the battlefield, leading to the loss of the crucial front-line city of Avdiivka. With the situation escalating on the eastern front and Russian assaults intensifying on energy infrastructure, President Volodymyr Zelensky emphasized that the failure of the U.S. Congress to approve military aid could result in Ukraine losing the war.

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said that U.S. President Joe Biden and congressional leaders reached a "consensus" on April 14 regarding the urgent need for Congress to swiftly provide aid to Israel and Ukraine. Schumer expressed his optimism that actions would be taken this week to assist both nations, as he mentioned during a press conference in New York.

Read also: Zelensky: Allies can defend Ukraine in the same way as they protected Israel

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