US says it will not send rocket systems to Ukraine to strike at territory inside Russia

PHOTO: Flickr/Gage Skidmore

The US has ruled out arming Ukraine with rocket systems that could strike targets inside Russian territory, according to an AFP report. President Joe Biden has confirmed his administration’s stance at a press briefing in Washington.

“We are not going to send to Ukraine rocket systems that can strike into Russia.”

Since Russia’s invasion in February, Ukraine has received significant support from the US and other Western allies in the form of sanctions against Russia and military aid. However, Ukraine says it needs long-range rockets if it’s to have any hope of matching its enemy’s power.

In particular, the Ukrainian government is calling on the US to provide systems that can deploy multiple rockets at once, with a range of up to 300 kilometres. This equates to 8 times the distance of the country’s current artillery and could give it the ability to hit targets inside Russian territory, although the Ukrainian government has not confirmed if that would be the intent.

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Ukraine’s Foreign Minister, Dmytro Kuleba, made the call for the systems while at the World Economic Forum in Switzerland. His plea was echoed by Mykhailo Podoliak, an advisor to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who took to Twitter to urge Western allies to provide the required equipment.

“It is hard to fight when you are attacked from a 70-kilometre distance and have nothing to fight back with.”

Earlier this month, the US pledged a further US$40 billion assistance package for Ukraine, with one official saying sending MLRS could still be an option, but without long-range capability.

Meanwhile, having failed to capture the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, the Russian military has changed its focus to the eastern Donbas region, where Putin’s forces continue to pound the cities of Severodonetsk and Lysychansk relentlessly in a bid to establish control.


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Maya Taylor

A seasoned writer, with a degree in Creative Writing. Over ten years' experience in producing blog and magazine articles, news reports and website content.

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