US Secretary of State Lloyd Austin speaking at the Halifax International Security Forum on Saturday, November 19, 2022. Screengrab of DoD Twitter video.InternationalIndiaAfricaWASHINGTON (Sputnik) – US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin will visit Sweden next week, to be followed by a trip to Germany for a Ukraine Defense Contact Group meeting, the Pentagon said on Friday. On April 19, in Sweden, Austin will “discuss security-related topics of mutual interest” and speak with senior Swedish defense and government officials, the Pentagon said in a statement. Russia’s Special Operation in UkraineOrban: Conflict in Ukraine to End Once US, Europe Stop Backing Kiev07:15 GMTLast week, Austin said he will visit Sweden this month to discuss the country’s NATO accession plans. Sweden’s membership bid is being held up by Turkiye and Hungary, while neighboring Finland officially joined the alliance last week. From Sweden, the Pentagon chief will head to Germany to host a meeting of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group at Ramstein Air Base on April 21. While there, Austin and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley will join senior military officials from over 50 countries to continue coordination on military assistance to Kiev amid its conflict with Russia, the Pentagon added. AnalysisMilitary Industrial Complex and Neo-Cons Getting Rich Off ‘Aimless’ Proxy War in Ukraine 30 March, 17:58 GMTThe American news outlet reported earlier this week that the United States is not expected to announce any major packages of assistance for Ukraine before the start of an expected Ukrainian offensive or anytime soon. A US official told the newspaper that the two packages announced on March 20 and April 4 would likely be the last ones announced by the Biden administration for the foreseeable future, despite Ukrainian pleas for more artillery and ammunition.
- Austin to Visit Sweden, Host Ukraine Contact Group in Germany Next Week