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U.S. to send long-range rockets to Ukraine, says Biden


Washington: A $700 million weapons package to be unveiled by US President Joe Biden on Wednesday will include advanced rocket systems capable of hitting long-range Russian targets with pinpoint precision.

Officials announcing the move said Ukraine is being provided high mobility artillery rocket systems with abilities to fire at targets spanning up to 80 kilometers (50 miles). Senior administration officials said Ukraine has assured them that the missiles won’t be used inside Russia.

Mr. Biden said in an op-ed published in the New York Times this week that the invasion of Ukraine will end through diplomatic efforts, but the U.S. must provide Ukraine with significant arms and ammunition to give it the most leverage in negotiations.

“That’s why I’ve decided that 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,” said Biden.

Besides ammunition and counterfire radars and air surveillance radars, officials said the package includes Javelin anti-tank missiles and anti-armor weapons.

In an effort to turn the tide of the three-month-long war, Ukrainian officials have asked allies for more powerful missile systems that are capable of firing hundreds of miles away.

Biden told reporters on Tuesday that “we’re not going to send to Ukraine rocket systems that strike into Russia.”

No specific weapons systems were excluded, but the conditions on their use appeared to be specified. While Biden wants to assist Ukraine in defending itself, he is opposed to arming the country with weapons it would use against the Russians.


In the months since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, tens of thousands of people have died and millions have been displaced, which Moscow calls a “special military operation” to “denazify” its neighbor. It is called a pretext for war by Ukraine and its Western allies.

As Ukraine’s forces battle Russians with more success than intelligence officials predicted, the West has been increasingly willing to provide extended-range weaponry, including M777 howitzers.

Meanwhile, U.S. intelligence warns of growing risks since Kremlin ambitions and the military’s performance discrepancies.

Ukrainian Defence Minister Oleksiy Reznikov said on Saturday that Ukraine has begun receiving Denmark’s Harpoon anti-ship missiles and the United States’ self-propelled howitzers.

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