Russia Has Right to Consider US, NATO Arms Convoys in Ukraine 'Legitimate Targets', MFA Warns
15:54 GMT 21.04.2022 (Updated: 16:23 GMT 21.04.2022)
© AP Photo / Efrem LukatskyUkrainian servicemen unpack Javelin anti-tank missiles, delivered as part of the United States of America's security assistance to Ukraine, at the Borispol airport, outside Kiev, Ukraine, Friday, Feb. 11, 2022
© AP Photo / Efrem Lukatsky
US President Joe Biden has announced an additional military aid package to the tune of $800 million to Ukraine. Meanwhile, according to CNN, Washington has no idea what happens to the weapons sent to Ukraine.
Moscow has the right to consider the US and NATO's arms convoys as "legitimate targets" if they pass through the Ukrainian territory, warns Sergei Koshelev, deputy director of the North America Department of the Russian Foreign Ministry.
"We are increasingly alarmed by the mushrooming statements by the US administration about their intention to continue massive deliveries of weapons and military equipment for the Armed Forces of Ukraine, despite the hopeless situation of their Kiev counterparts. The calculation is clear: to slow down our special operation and inflict maximum damage on the Russian armed forces," Koshelev said.
The warning follows an announcement of an additional $800 million security aid package for Ukraine by US President Joe Biden. The Pentagon clarified that the new package would include 72 Howitzers, tens of thousands of artillery rounds, over 120 Phoenix tactical drones, parts and other equipment. Biden also said that the White House would send Congress a supplemental budget request next week to continue US efforts to provide Ukraine with weapons amid the Russian special military operation there.
Meanwhile, CNN cited sources as saying that Washington lacks the capability to reliably track the array of weapons being sent by the Biden administration to Ukraine.
"We have fidelity for a short time, but when it enters the fog of war, we have almost zero," a source said. "It drops into a big black hole, and you have almost no sense of it at all after a short period of time."
The Biden administration factored in the risk of providing weapons to Ukraine that may end up in the hands of militias and other groups that the US does not want to arm, the report said. However, officials currently view a failure to adequately arm Ukraine as a greater risk, the report added.
Following the CNN report, the Pentagon went into damage control mode, "assuring" that all the provided equipment would arrive where it is supposed to and would be used accordingly.
The United States and NATO have been pumping Ukraine with loads of weapons, including Switchblade drones, Javelin anti-tank missiles, Howitzer artillery systems, armoured personnel vehicles and more. The Pentagon also said that Ukrainians will be trained outside of Ukraine on how to use the US-provided weapons. Then, they will return to Ukraine and train more troops.
On 24 February, Russia launched a special military operation in Ukraine after the newly-recognised republics of Donetsk and Lugansk appealed for help in defending themselves against the Kiev regime.