Washington: The Biden administration intends to provide Ukraine with precision-guided missiles that can hit targets from a distance of 40 miles as part of further effort to boost Ukrainian military in face of Russia’s operation, The Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday, citing US officials.
The guided multiple launch rocket systems under consideration can fire twice the distance of the M777 howitzers that the United States has already delivered to Ukraine, the report said.
At the moment, it is not yet known how many of these systems will be sent to Ukraine, but according to one official, cited in the report, if approved the first deliveries would begin within weeks. Training Ukrainians on how to operate these systems would last at least 10 days.
The Pentagon repeatedly said that the Ukrainian side has on many occasions asked the United States to send them multiple rocket launchers, especially after the epicenter of the battles moved to Donbas.
Systems, manufactured by Lockheed Martin, would allow Ukrainian forces to strike Russian positions throughout the Donbas region and can be fired from either tracked or wheeled launchers, according to the officials.
On Monday, President Joe Biden said that Washington will not supply Kyiv with missile systems capable of striking Russian territory.
The Biden administration has already provided Ukraine with 1,400 Stinger anti-aircraft systems along with 5,500 Javelins, and hundreds of drones among other equipment since Russia’s military operation began in February.