President Joe Biden reversed course and vowed to provide more advanced rocket systems to Ukraine in its war against Russia, CNN reports.
The Biden administration resisted sending the advanced rocket systems despite pleas from Ukrainian officials.
"I won't send anything that can fire into Russia," Biden told reporters on Monday when asked if he would send long-range rockets.
Many of the rockets sent by the US only have a range of about a few dozen miles while some of the longer-range weapons can fire rockets more than 300 miles.
Russia warned on Friday that sending such rockets would “cross a red line.”
Biden in a New York Times op-ed on Tuesday said the US would provide Ukraine with “most advanced rocket systems and munitions” after officials pledged not to strike inside Russia.
Biden said the US would also provide Ukraine with more Javelin anti-tank missiles, Stinger antiaircraft missiles, drones, helicopters, and more.
“We do not seek a war between NATO and Russia,” Biden wrote. “As much as I disagree with Mr. Putin, and find his actions an outrage, the United States will not try to bring about his ouster in Moscow. So long as the United States or our allies are not attacked, we will not be directly engaged in this conflict, either by sending American troops to fight in Ukraine or by attacking Russian forces. We are not encouraging or enabling Ukraine to strike beyond its borders. We do not want to prolong the war just to inflict pain on Russia.”
Kremlin hits back:
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told the Associated Press that the US was “deliberately and diligently pouring fuel on the fire.”
He said that the Kremlin does not trust Ukrainian assurances that the weapons won’t be used to strike inside Russia.
“In order to trust (someone), you need to have experience with situations when such promises were kept. Regretfully, there is no such experience whatsoever,” Peskov said.