Espreso. Global

Ukraine's use of U.S.-provided arms in Russia not confined to near Kharkiv - Pentagon

21 June, 2024 Friday
13:15

The Pentagon said that Ukraine may use arms provided by the US to strike Russian troops firing at Ukrainian forces anywhere across Russia's border, not only on Russian territory near Ukraine's Kharkiv region 

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Reuters reported the information.

President Joe Biden unofficially gave Kyiv permission last month to fire US-supplied weaponry at Russian military targets. However, at the time, authorities stated that Biden's decision only applied to targets within Russia that were close to the eastern Kharkiv area of Ukraine.

The report notes that Pentagon spokesperson Air Force Major General Patrick Ryder told reporters that despite the lack of policy changes, Ukraine's use of weapons against Russian troops was not limited to the actions near Kharkiv on the Russian side.

"The ability to be able to fire back when fired upon is really what this policy is focused on... as we see Russian forces firing across the border, the ability for Ukraine to fire back at those ground forces using U.S.-provided munitions," Ryder said.

"It's self-defense and so it makes sense for them to be able to do that," he added.

Ryder's remarks resonate with that Biden's national security adviser made earlier this week.

"This is not about geography. It's about common sense," White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan told PBS. "If Russia is attacking or about to attack from its territory into Ukraine, it only makes sense to allow Ukraine to hit back against the forces that are hitting it from across the border."

In addition, Sullivan said that Ukraine could also use air defense systems to shoot at Russian aircraft flying in Russian airspace if they intended to open fire in Ukrainian airspace.

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.

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