Ukraine is to get modern artillery systems from the USA. US President Biden announced this. There had previously been confusion over his statement that Ukraine would not be supplied with weapons that could reach Russia.
The US government will supply modern missile systems to Ukraine as a result of Russia's war of aggression, according to President Joe Biden. Biden wrote in a guest article for the New York Times published on Tuesday evening (local time) that the attacked country should be able to hit "important targets on the battlefield in Ukraine" more precisely. Biden did not provide any information about which systems are specifically involved. Earlier, the US government said it was considering supplying US-made MLRS and HIMARS artillery systems. Biden stressed, "We do not encourage or enable Ukraine to strike beyond its borders."
On Monday, Biden caused confusion when he said he would not send missile systems to Ukraine that could hit Russian territory. White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre slightly modified Biden's statement on Tuesday. According to her, the president said that no missiles would be delivered "for use outside of the battlefield in Ukraine". However, the delivery of the US-made MLRS (Multiple Launch Rocket System) and HIMARS (High Mobility Artillery Rocket System) artillery systems is still being considered.
The "Washington Post" then raised the question of whether this meant restricting the weapon systems, the type of missiles or the use by Ukraine. The US government may withhold long-range missiles compatible with artillery systems. Typically, missiles fired from these systems would have a range of around 70 kilometers. Specialized missiles could fly up to 300 kilometers.
The broadcaster CNN reported a few days ago, citing officials, that the US government was considering sending the multiple rocket launchers to Ukraine. Ukraine asked for these types of weapons. However, the US government is hesitant because of fears that Ukraine could use the systems for attacks on Russian territory. The question therefore arises as to whether this could lead to a Russian retaliatory measure against the USA.
Biden's statements on Monday met with sharp criticism from US Republicans. Prominent Republican Senator Lindsey Graham tweeted that the government's decision not to send these weapons was a "betrayal of Ukraine and of democracy itself." The Biden government is apparently "once again intimidated by Russian rhetoric."