Ukraine: ‘Misguided’ Joe Biden slammed over weapons restrictions
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The 46th President penned a guest essay in the New York Times on Tuesday which revealed Washington will assist Kyiv by providing significant weapons and ammunition. A $700million (£555.81million) weapons package, which will be formally unveiled later today, is expected to include helicopters, Javelin anti-tank weapon systems, tactical vehicles, spare parts and more.
The POTUS said: “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.”
The news comes after Mr Biden appeared to set at ease tensions between Washington and Moscow over the deployment of American-made long-range missiles.
However, Mr Biden told reporters on Monday: “We are not going to send to Ukraine rocket systems that can strike into Russia.”
The multiple-launch rocket systems can have a range of up to 185miles.
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But others use rockets with shorter ranges of between 20 and 40miles.
According to the Guardian, weapons included in the new tranche of supplies can travel as far as 45miles.
A US official also said on Monday: “MLRS is under consideration, but nothing is on the table with long-range strike capabilities.”
Long-range missiles have also been a cause for concern for both Moscow and Kyiv.
Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Friday that supplying weapons capable of hitting Russia would be a “serious step towards unacceptable escalation”.
But Dmytro Kuleba, a Ukrainian Foreign Minister, urged Washington to fulfil its “promise” and supply longer-range missiles.
He said: “Every day of someone sitting in Washington, Berlin, Paris and other capitals, and considering whether they should or should not do something, costs us lives and territories.”
However, the US has received assurances from Ukraine that they will not fire rockets into Russia.
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In his essay, Biden added: “We are not encouraging or enabling Ukraine to strike beyond its borders.
“We do not want to prolong the war just to inflict pain on Russia.”
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