The US State Department is ordering family members of US Embassy and consulate personnel in Ukraine to prepare for evacuation from the country beginning on Monday. American citizens who are currently in Ukraine for their own reasons will be advised to leave on commercial flights while those remain open and available. The announcement concerning dependents came a few short hours before the first US shipment of weapons and other material arrived in Ukraine.
The talks between US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Friday seem to have set the stage for the next phase of this crisis to commence. Despite the mutual promises to continue discussions aimed at defusing the current crisis, it is clear Washington has accepted the fact there will be some type of Russian military operation aimed at Ukraine in the coming days or weeks. On the flip side, Russia has accepted that the United States has no intention of discussing its security concerns candidly. The State Department has delayed giving the official US response to Russia’s security proposals in the hopes a deal could be reached. With hopes for a deal fading, State Department has announced the official reply will be delivered to the Russian government this coming week.
US shipments of weapons and other types of war material now underway and expected to increase as time goes on. Most of the 200,000 pounds of aid consists of small arms ammunition. Javelin anti-tank missiles will start to arrive in Ukraine next week, from the Baltics, as well as from US stockpiles in other parts of Europe.