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Pentagon Considers Funding Starlink Network for Ukraine, Politico

Published: October 17, 2022
A Starlink satellite-based broadband system is seen at a mobile passport application station installed by the State Migration Service in Shevchenk, Kharkiv region, on September 29, 2022. (Photo by Yasuyoshi CHIBA / AFP) (Photo by YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP via Getty Images)

The Pentagon is considering paying for Elon Musk’s Starlink satellite network that helped restore communications in war-torn Ukraine, Politico reported on Monday, citing two U.S. officials involved in the discussions.

SpaceX, which operates Starlink, and the Pentagon did not immediately respond to Reuters’ requests for comment.

The most likely source of funding would be the U.S. Department of Defense Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative, designed to support the country as it fights Russia, the report added.

The move comes after Musk on Friday said SpaceX could not indefinitely fund Starlink in Ukraine, but quickly backtracked over the weekend to assert the rocket company would continue to fund the service in the country.

Starlink has helped Ukraine’s civilians and military stay online during the war, with Ukraine’s Vice Prime Minister Mykhailo Fedorov last week saying Starlink’s services helped restore energy and communications infrastructure in critical areas.

By Reuters (Reporting by Deborah Sophia in Bengaluru; Editing by Vinay Dwivedi)