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: Biden asks Congress for additional $33 billion in Ukraine aid: ‘We have to do our part’

President Joe Biden is asking Congress to approve about $33 billion in additional aid for Ukraine, which would be on top of the $13.6 billion in military, economic and humanitarian assistance that U.S. lawmakers authorized last month.

That figure includes more than $20 billion in military and other security assistance, $8.5 billion in economic assistance and $3 billion in humanitarian assistance and food-security funding, a Biden administration official told reporters.

Biden is slated to deliver a speech about his request to Congress around 10:45 a.m. Eastern on Thursday. He will give remarks on “support for Ukrainians defending their country and their freedom against Russia’s brutal war,” the White House said in a statement.

U.S. lawmakers have indicated they’re ready to approve additional money, as there is bipartisan backing for Ukraine’s fight against Russia, which began its full-scale invasion of the country in late February.

Also Thursday, Biden is sending a legislative proposal to Congress that administration officials say will enhance the U.S. government’s ability to hold Russia’s government and Russian oligarchs accountable for the country’s war on Ukraine.

That proposal includes measures that would streamline the process for seizure of oligarch assets and enable the proceeds to flow to Ukraine, according to a White House statement. Other measures would strengthen the U.S. government’s ability to investigate and prosecute sanctions evasion.

Ukraine said Thursday that Russia’s offensive in the east had picked up momentum, and United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres visited towns outside the capital of Kyiv where evidence of mass killings of civilians was found after Russia’s retreat from the area.

U.S. stocks
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gained Thursday, boosted by results from Facebook parent Meta Platforms
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that weren’t as bad as anticipated, as investors largely brushed off data showing a contraction in first-quarter gross domestic product.

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