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US to send Ukraine ‘advanced rocket systems’ to hit ‘key targets’

US to send Ukraine ‘advanced rocket systems’ to hit ‘key targets’

WASHINGTON:President Joe Biden yesterday (May 31) confirmed the United States will send more advanced rocket systems to Ukraine with ability to strike what he called “key targets” of Russia’s invasion force.

militaryRussianUkraineviolencepolitics
By AFP

Wednesday 1 June 2022, 09:56AM


US M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) launchers fire salvoes during the “African Lion” military exercise in the Grier Labouihi region in southeastern Morocco in June 2021. Photo: Fadel Senna / AFP

US M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) launchers fire salvoes during the “African Lion” military exercise in the Grier Labouihi region in southeastern Morocco in June 2021. Photo: Fadel Senna / AFP

“We will provide the Ukrainians with more advanced rocket systems and munitions that will enable them to more precisely strike key targets on the battlefield in Ukraine,” Biden wrote in The New York Times.

A US official told reporters that the weapons being sent are Himars, or the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System.

With precision-guided munitions and a longer range than weapons currently deployed by Ukraine, the multiple rocket launchers represent an important upgrade at a time when the Ukrainians are battling Russian artillery in the east of the country.

The Himars rockets “will enable the Ukrainians to more precisely strike targets on the battlefield from greater distance inside Ukraine and to help them repel Russia,” the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“These systems will be used by the Ukrainians to repel Russian advances on Ukrainian territory but they will not be used against Russia.”

The Himars are the centerpiece of a US$700 million (B24 billion) package being unveiled today, also including air surveillance radars, more Javelin short-range anti-tank rockets, more artillery ammunition, helicopters, vehicles and spare parts, the official said.

Although there’d been speculation for days that Himars were going - following repeated pleas from Ukraine’s outgunned military - the announcement also made clear the US attempt to help Kyiv’s war effort while not being seen as a direct belligerent.

CBRE Phuket

For that reason, the ammunition for the Himars will not include a version able to reach some 186 miles (300 kilometers), out of fear that the Ukrainians would use it to hit deep inside Russia.

They will instead get the version extending about 50 miles (80 km), which is still significantly further than the Ukrainians’ present capabilities, the US official said. That means Ukraine’s forces will be able to strike at Russian positions with the rockets from relative safety.

The “Ukrainians have given assurances they will not use these systems against Russian territory,” the official stressed.

The new weaponry will come from a recently approved fund of $40 billion. Already the Biden administration has sent $4.5 billion in mostly military aid to Ukraine since the war began with Russia’s February invasion.

Asked what the United States considers the war aim for Ukraine, the official said it was to put Kyiv “in the strongest possible position at the negotiating table.”

While the United States does not want to “prolong the war,” it considers it vital that Russia “pay a heavy price for its actions” or it will “send a message to other would-be aggressors that they can take a territory by force,” the official said.

“We will not pressure the Ukrainian government in private or in public to make any territorial concessions,” the official said.

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DeKaaskopp | 01 June 2022 - 19:06:24

"Time Ukraine startd rocketing Russian cities "  Great idea Kurt ! Let them kill more innocent civilians ! Why not start a 3rd world war too ? Seems like you wouldn't mind , Mr. Keyboard warrior !

Pooliekev | 01 June 2022 - 18:40:43

An before you know it America will invade, well, anybody!!

Kurt | 01 June 2022 - 12:16:17

The present 'world order' is continues on stake. That Russia's intention is to destroy the whole civiel infrastructure ( cities, schools, hospitals) and steals Ukraine's steel/grain is terrible. It is time Russia gets a taste of one's own medicines. Time Ukraine startd rocketing Russian cities. Provide the needed weapons. Russia has no buniness in Ukraine.

Kurt | 01 June 2022 - 11:23:43

If Russian war criminal Putin gets Ukraine in hands, than next domino stone is Georgia, than next the 3 small Baltic states. Than eastern border Poland face Russia. For own interest alone already Europe and USA must support Ukraine as much as possible to put the agressor back in his loft. Moral support of Asean countries will be appreciated.

 

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