Biden announces military help to Ukraine


US President Joe Biden has announced the US will send medium-range rocket systems to Ukraine to aid its forces as they struggle to stall Russian progress, in an apparent change of mind.
The US president said on Monday that Washington was “not going to send to Ukraine rocket systems that can strike into Russia”.
But with Vladimir Putin’s forces making advances in the Donbas region, the decision to deliver the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) was taken on the condition Ukraine does not use it to launch strikes over the border.
Officials say the systems are part of a new $700m (£556m) package of security assistance for Kyiv from the US that will include helicopters, Javelin anti-tank weapon systems, tactical vehicles, spare parts and more.
The White House hopes the decision to provide the advance rocket systems strikes a balance between the desire to help Ukraine stave off Russian artillery barrages while not providing arms that could trigger an escalation in the war.
In a guest essay published in The New York Times, Mr Biden confirmed he had decided to “provide the Ukrainians with more advanced rocket systems and munitions that will enable them to more precisely strike key targets on the battlefield in Ukraine”.