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The Ukrainian delegation will negotiate the transfer of ATACMS missiles and combat drones – Politico

The Ukrainian delegation will negotiate the transfer of ATACMS missiles and combat drones – Politico

Military assistance Ukraine USA War with Russia

During the meeting in Washington, the Ukrainian delegation will hold talks with the Biden administration on the transfer of long-range Army Tactical Missile Systems, or ATACMS, and Grey Eagle and Reaper drones.

Politico reports this with reference to sources familiar with the discussions.

“During the meeting with Biden and his national security team, the Ukrainian delegation is expected to make another round of pleas for long-range Army Tactical Missile Systems, or ATACMS, and Grey Eagle and Reaper drones, according to a person familiar with the discussions,” the publication noted.

At the same time, they note that U.S. officials aren’t ready to budge and would flatly reject sending the ATACMS to Ukraine.

“Sending long-range missiles to Kyiv could risk provoking Putin using potentially even more lethal weapons inside Ukraine,” the publication added.

However, they emphasize that the issue of further assistance for Ukraine will dominate the personal meeting between Volodymyr Zelensky and Joe Biden, which will take place in the White House on December 21.

They note that Volodymyr Zelensky’s visit to Washington should also stimulate further support of Ukraine by Western allies in Europe in the war against Russia.

Cooperation with the Congress

The President of Ukraine will also address the U.S. Congress. Journalists add that Zelensky’s personal presence in Washington was unexpected for congressmen.

They note that it was in the works for a long time and will likely be used by Joe Biden’s administration to motivate lawmakers to continue supporting Ukraine.

This is due to the fact that the Democrats are losing their majority, and the Republicans are more critical of providing assistance to Ukraine without additional oversight.

The Pentagon officials have repeatedly emphasized that there is no confirmation that the weapons transferred to Ukraine are being used improperly. In addition, the US and its partners note the effectiveness of the use of the provided weapons.

At the beginning of December, Congress rejected the request of Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) to audit the aid provided to Ukraine.

However, she confirmed that she will reintroduce the resolution as early as next month.

As previously reported, the White House confirmed that on December 21, Joe Biden will be announcing a $2bn aid package to Ukraine that will include Patriot SAM.

ATACMS

ATACMS missile systems are surface-to-surface missiles that can hit targets hundreds of kilometers away and are launched from M142/M270 systems, which are already in service with Ukraine.

In October, information appeared that Ukraine requested the US to hand over these weapons under the condition of full and ongoing visibility into their list of intended targets.

Grey Eagle та Reaper

A group of U.S. Senators has repeatedly appealed to the Pentagon to hand over MQ-1C Gray Eagle drones to Ukraine.

The senators justify their appeal by pointing to the fact that the Russian Federation is actively using Iranian kamikaze drones. In their opinion, this gives Russia an advantage. Therefore, Ukraine should get weapons to counter these threats.

They also note that the training of the Ukrainian military on the MQ-1C will take 27 days and that those drones could also be used against the Russian fleet.

At the beginning of November, the United States Department of Defense refused to transfer the MQ-1C drones to Ukraine. The refusal followed the earlier letter from the senators with the same request.

As for the MQ-9 drones, General Atomics has announced that it intends to provide Ukraine with these UAVs.

The MQ-9 is being considered as part of wider support for partners in Eastern Europe.


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Military assistance Ukraine USA War with Russia