U.S. announces new $600 million arms package for Ukraine

FILE PHOTO - Ukraine receives shipment of U.S. military aid at Boryspil airport

By Mike Stone, Humeyra Pamuk and Steve Holland

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -U.S. President Joe Biden announced a new $600 million arms package to help the Ukrainian military battle Russia, according to a White House memo sent to the State Department on Thursday.

Biden authorized the assistance using his Presidential Drawdown Authority, which allows the president to sanction the transfer of excess weapons from U.S. stocks.

The package includes High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), night vision goggles, claymore mines, mine clearing equipment, 105mm artillery rounds and 155mm precision guided artillery rounds, the Pentagon said.

The White House memo also mentioned the money will be used for military education and training.

Washington has sent about $15.1 billion dollars in security assistance to the Kyiv government since Russia's invasion.

"To meet Ukraine’s evolving battlefield requirements, the United States will continue to work with its Allies and partners to provide Ukraine with key capabilities," the Pentagon said.

(Reporting by Mike Stone, Humeyra Pamuk and Steve Holland; Editing by Lisa Shumaker, Chris Reese & Shri Navaratnam)