‘Ukraine chooses its own targets,’ says Pentagon after attacks on Russian air bases
Pentagon commented on the strikes on Russian airfields (Photo:Mark Krutov/twitter.com)
Commenting on recent attacks on military airfields in Russia, a Pentagon official said that the United States had no prior knowledge of who carried out these strikes, and that Ukraine decides itself what enemy targets to attack.
Deputy Pentagon Press Secretary Sabrina Singh during a briefing on Dec. 7 said the U.S. Department of Defense does not coordinate with Ukraine all of the attacks that are carried out.
“I wouldn't say that we are in constant communication or contact about strikes that are going to take place,” said Singh. “(But) we certainly work with our Ukrainian counterparts.”
“One of the things that we do is we’re providing the weapons, the systems that they need, (and) they are making the decisions on the ground in terms of targeting, (and) in terms of when they conduct an operation.”
“What we are providing is the security assistance. So, no, we were not necessarily informed or aware of any strike happening within Russia. We’ve seen the reports, but I have nothing further to add to that I would direct you to the Ukrainian military for further comment.”
An unidentified UAV crashed into the flight line at the Engels-2 airbase in Russia’s Saratov Oblast on Dec. 5. Satellite imagery recorded possible damage to a Tu-95 strategic bomber – an aircraft Russia uses to launch cruise missiles at targets in Ukraine.
A fuel truck caught fire at Dyagilevo airfield near the city of Ryazan, causing an explosion. According to satellite images, a Tu-22M aircraft likely suffered damage.
Later, on Dec. 6, another drone attack was reported – this time on an airfield in Kursk. The resulting fire at the airfield was recorded by satellites of the Planet Labs service.
The Russian Defense Ministry said that as a result of the incidents at the airfields, three Russian servicemen were killed and four more were injured. The Air Force of the Ukrainian Armed Forces noted that after the explosions, the Russians will have “a reduction in aviation equipment.”
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