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US bans Ukraine from firing its weapons deeper than 100 km into Russia

22 June, 2024 Saturday

Ukrainian officials say the United States has banned Ukraine from firing over 100 kilometers into Russian territory


The Washington Post reports.

US permission to strike Russian territory with certain US weapons has led to a reduction in some Russian attacks, but still does not allow Ukraine to hit key airfields deep inside Russia, two Ukrainian officials said. These airfields are used by Russian planes that drop guided bombs that cause the most damage to military and civilians.

Ukrainian officials said that the United States has banned Ukraine from firing more than 100 kilometers into Russian territory. US officials declined to elaborate on the restrictions, but said the Ukrainian claim of 100 kilometers was incorrect.

Major Charlie Dietz, Pentagon spokesperson, stated that the US has agreed to allow Ukraine to fire from US-provided weapons into Russia at the location where Russian forces are attempting to seize Ukrainian territory. He emphasized that this authorization is not tied to specific geography or radius, but if Russia attacks or plans to attack Ukraine from its territory, Ukraine has the ability to strike forces attacking from across the border.

Dietz said that Ukraine has also been allowed to use the air defense systems provided by the US to strike Russian aircraft if they intend to shoot into Ukrainian airspace.

One Ukrainian military official said that the authorization to use US weapons for strikes inside Russia "definitely changed the situation. The enemy certainly felt it, especially on the front lines."

But the official added: "Neither the range nor the category (of weapons) is sufficient."

Another Ukrainian official said that allowing strikes on Russian territory "helped reduce terrorist attacks on Kharkiv. That's why we say that more distance will help us to reduce Putin's ability to continue this war much more."

Which countries allowed Ukraine to use its weapons to strike at the territory of Russia

On May 2, British Foreign Secretary David Cameron said that Ukraine has the right to use British weapons to strike at Russian territory. In response, Russia threatened to strike at UK military facilities.

On May 26, Swedish Defense Minister Pal Jonson said that Ukraine could use weapons provided by Stockholm to hit targets in Russia.

On May 27, the Parliamentary Assembly of the North Atlantic Alliance called on the governments of all NATO member states to allow Ukraine to use Western weapons to strike at Russian targets.

Later, French President Emmanuel Macron said that Ukraine has the right to strike military targets in Russia.

Subsequently, Polish Deputy Defense Minister Cezary Tomczyk said that his country supports Ukraine's right to use Western weapons to strike targets in Russia.

Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Estonia, the Czech Republic, and Finland also gave permission to use their weapons outside Ukraine.

On May 29, Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Joly said that the country had not set any conditions for the use of weapons when providing Kyiv with them.

At the same time, the United States continues to restrict Ukraine's ability to use the weapons it has been given.

On May 30, Norway said that Western countries should allow Ukraine to use their weapons on Russian territory to speed up Kyiv's victory.

On the same day, Danish Foreign Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen said that Ukraine would be able to use Danish F-16 fighter jets to strike military targets in Russia.

On May 30, Czech Foreign Minister Jan Lipavský said that his country "has no problems" with Kyiv's use of ammunition provided by Prague to strike at Russian territory.

Latvia does not impose any restrictions on the use of its weapons for strikes on Russian territory, but does not discuss sending troops to Ukraine.

On May 31, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken confirmed that President Joe Biden had secretly authorized Ukraine to strike targets in Russia with US weapons. Ukrainian leader Volodymyr Zelenskyy said that the message came from the United States and called the ally's action a "step forward." 

On June 2, France said that since Ukraine had not initially received restrictions on the use of its Storm Shadow missiles, it could fire them at Russian territory.

Defense Minister Kajsa Ollongren said Ukraine will be able to use F-16 fighter jets provided by the Netherlands to strike targets in Russia.

Subsequently, the White House officially confirmed the authorization to use American weapons on Russian territory near both Kharkiv and Sumy regions of Ukraine. 

The US State Department said that Ukraine has been authorized to use U.S. weapons on Russian territory because it is a "matter of common sense."

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