- US provides ATACMS missiles to Ukraine.
- Boosts Ukraine’s counter-offensive capabilities.
- Concerns over escalation with Russia.
US President Joe Biden is set to provide Ukraine with long-range ATACMS missiles to bolster its counter-offensive efforts against Russia, according to reports in US media.
The missiles in question have a range of up to 190 miles (300km), allowing Ukraine to target Russian positions deep within its territory.
Storm Shadow missiles from Britain and France reportedly attacked Russia’s Black Sea navy headquarters in Crimea.
Unnamed US officials have stated that President Biden informed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky during their recent meeting that Kyiv would receive “a small number” of ATACMS (Army Tactical Missile System) missiles, with deliveries expected in the coming weeks.
These missiles may have cluster bomblets, although neither the US nor Ukraine has confirmed this.
The US announced $325 million in military aid for Ukraine, including artillery and ammunition, and Abrams tanks soon after their meeting.
While both leaders have been cautious about discussing the ATACMS issue, Ukraine has long sought these missiles to target key Russian supply lines and logistical hubs behind the front lines, making it harder for Moscow to resupply its forces.
The Biden administration initially hesitated to provide Ukraine with advanced weaponry, but its stance has shifted over time, with previous deliveries of high-precision Himars long-range rocket systems and Patriot air defense missiles.
However, concerns remain about the implications of supplying ATACMS missiles, given the potential for escalation with nuclear-armed Russia.