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Russia comments on ATACMS delivery to Kiev

A previously-undisclosed supply of the long-range weapons by the US was confirmed by the White House this week

The “secret” supply by Washington to Ukraine of long-range surface-to-surface ATACMS rockets only spells more trouble for Kiev, Kremlin spokesman Dimitry Peskov told journalists on Thursday.

On Wednesday, White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan confirmed media reports that the US had delivered Army Tactical Missile Systems (ATACMS) to Ukraine as part of the arms package announced by President Joe Biden in mid-March. The assistance came as the Biden administration was pressuring the House to approve an additional $60 billion in Ukraine-related security spending. The Pentagon did not mention the missiles at the time.

Peskov mocked the fact that, prior to the confirmation, there was much speculation among the Western press that ATACMS rockets could be included in a pending new shipment of arms, after lawmakers cleared the spending request. The Russian official said the shift in the narrative was fitting what he described as a “predictable” pattern of actions by the West.

”As soon as they start to discuss something particular in detail, it means the delivery is being made,” he said.

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File photo: Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) in action.
US secretly shipped ATACMS missiles to Ukraine – media

The spokesman said it was not Moscow’s job to judge whether the delivery was legal under US law, but assured reporters that the capability of the weapons in question would not impact the outcome of the Ukraine conflict, in which Russia intends to achieve all its national-security goals one way or another.

”We will get what we want. But this [the weapons] will result in more problems for Ukraine,” he predicted.

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky previously blamed the suspension of American aid for the series of battlefield setbacks, which his army has experienced since last year. He claims that Kiev has no alternative to beating Russia and achieving what he touts as a “just peace”. Moscow has branded Kiev’s victory goals as detached from reality.

Some officials in the Biden administration are skeptical about the impact of the new spending on the battlefield dynamics, Politico reported on Wednesday.

READ MORE: Biden team doubts US aid will help Ukraine win – Politico

“There’s lots of debate about what a winning endgame for Ukraine looks like at this point,” an anonymous Democratic source told the outlet.

April 25, 2024 at 05:50PM

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