US to send four HIMARS launchers to Ukraine within next military aid package

4 October 2022, 01:15 PM
A new military aid package will be announced on Tuesday (Photo:REUTERS/Ints Kalnins)

A new military aid package will be announced on Tuesday (Photo:REUTERS/Ints Kalnins)

The United States is expected to include four High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) launchers, munitions, mines, and mine-resistant vehicles in the next $625 million security assistance package for Ukraine, the Reuters news agency reported on Oct. 3, citing two sources in the U.S. government.

According to Reuters, the package, expected to be announced as soon as Oct. 4, is the first since Russia’s most recent claimed annexation of Ukrainian territory, and the second use of thew Presidential Drawdown Authority (PDA) since Ukraine made large battlefield gains in mid-September.

By using this drawdown authority, the four HIMARS launchers and associated rockets, some 200 Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles, ammunition for Howitzers and mines, can be sent to Ukraine in the coming days.

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The Pentagon unveiled a new $1.1 billion military aid package for Ukraine on Sept. 28. This latest package included 18 HIMARS multiple launch rocket systems, although the U.S. Department of Defense later clarified that the manufacturer and delivery of these systems could take several years.

U.S. President Joe Biden signed the Lend-Lease Act to assist Ukraine in its conflict with Russia on May 9. It allows the White House to provide Ukraine with weapons, equipment, ammunition, and dual-use products under an accelerated procedure, that is, without waiting for a special allocation of funds by the U.S. Congress.

Ruslan Stefanchuk, the chairman of Ukraine’s parliament, the Verkhovna Rada, said on Oct. 1 that the U.S. Lend-Lease Act had come into force.

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