On Friday, U.S. President Joe Biden approved a new arms deal with Ukraine for up to $400 million, which included four more high mobility artillery rocket systems (HIMARS), as well as extra ammunition.
The additional American assistance is intended to support Ukraine as it endures a barrage of Russian artillery fire.
Since the invasion on February 24, Russian forces have seized control of a sizable portion of land above Crimea, which Russia annexed in 2014. Two east Ukrainian rebel areas that Russia has recognized as autonomous republics are being gradually driven out by Russian military.
Under the condition of anonymity, a senior U.S. defense official claimed that the extra HIMARS would raise the overall number of these systems to 12.
The official claimed that Ukraine had been successful in hitting Russian targets farther behind the front lines and preventing Russia from carrying out its artillery operation.
After Russia’s military ministry claimed earlier this week that it had destroyed two HIMARS systems and their ammo dumps in eastern Ukraine, the official went on to say that all of the HIMARS delivered to Ukraine were in fact present and accounted for.
After securing guarantees from Kiev that it wouldn’t use the crucial precision rocket armament system to strike targets within Russian territory, the United States began supplying Ukraine with it last month.
The officer continued, “Ukraine has not launched attacks outside of Ukraine using HIMARS systems.”
The most recent arsenal also includes more accurate howitzer artillery ammunition, which Kyiv had not previously received but which is accessible to the U.S. military.
Since the Russian invasion, which Moscow describes as a special military operation to disarm and “denazify” Ukraine, thousands of people have died there and millions have been displaced.
As the United States and its allies supply Ukraine with more advanced weapons, Washington has talked to Kiev about the potential for escalation if it launches an attack deep within Russia, according to U.S. and foreign officials who spoke to the media.
Since Russia’s military invaded Ukraine and restarted a full-scale war in Europe, the United States has now contributed over $7.3 billion in aid, including the most recent rounds.