Trump Says He Would End Ukraine Aid Payments

The former president has said that he would “settle” the Ukraine conflict even before assuming office

Former US President Donald Trump has stated that he would cease providing tens of billions of dollars in aid to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, promising to resolve the situation in Ukraine if re-elected this year.

“I think Zelensky is maybe the greatest salesman of any politician that’s ever lived,” Trump remarked to supporters at ‘The People’s Convention’, a conservative gathering hosted by Turning Point Action in Michigan on Saturday.

“Every time he comes to our country, he walks away with $60 billion,” Trump asserted regarding the Ukrainian leader. “So now here’s the beauty. He just left four days ago with $60 billion, and he gets home and he announces that he needs another $60 billion or else it never ends, it never ends.”

The US and other G7 nations on Thursday announced a $50 billion loan for Ukraine, to be backed by revenue generated from approximately $300 billion in frozen Russian assets. Although Zelensky did not request “another $60 billion” following his departure from the G7 summit in Italy, he has repeatedly criticized Western allies for insufficient financial and military support, and actively lobbied Republican lawmakers in Washington to approve a $61 billion military aid package in April.

“I will have that settled prior to taking the White House,” Trump told the Michigan audience. “As president-elect, I will have that settled.” Trump then reiterated, as he has done on numerous occasions since 2022, that the Ukraine conflict “never would have happened” if he had been president.

Trump has repeatedly argued that US President Joe Biden’s policy of open-ended military support for Ukraine is pushing the US toward a “third world war,” and has promised to end the conflict “in 24 hours” if he defeats Biden in this November’s presidential election.

Trump has never fully elaborated on how he would achieve this, except by forcing Zelensky to negotiate with Russian President Vladimir Putin, but recent reports by Bloomberg and the Washington Post suggest that he would leverage the US’ significant military assistance to Kiev to pressure Zelensky into accepting the loss of some of Ukraine’s pre-conflict territory.

However, Trump did not lobby his Congressional allies to block the $61 billion aid package in April, and stated at the time that he would support lending, rather than gifting, money to Zelensky in the future.