Moscow said its army have destroyed platoon of U.S. HIMARS and Alder systems.
Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS) from Ukraine and US-supplied weaponry that have significantly aided Kyiv’s war effort were reportedly destroyed by Russian forces.
Lieutenant-General Igor Konashenkov, a spokesperson for the Russian Defense Ministry, said that his country’s forces had destroyed a Ukrainian platoon of weapons, including M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems made in the United States (HIMARS).
According to Tass news agency, Konashenkov said, “During a counter-battery fight, a Ukrainian platoon of Alder multiple launch rocket systems and American HIMARS were destroyed near the village of Pyatigorskoye, in the Kharkiv region.”
At least 16 HIMARS have apparently been supplied to Kyiv’s military, with more supposedly on the way, according to Ukrainian and American sources. As part of a $1 billion military package that the Biden administration will reveal next week, a fresh batch of munitions for the systems is also expected to be supplied, according to Reuters.
A guided ammunition MLRS made in Ukraine, the Alder, was introduced to the Ukrainian armed services in 2018.
Konashenkov did not say how many of the systems were allegedly attacked by Russian military. But according to him, Russian forces also attacked Grad MLRS, Gvozdika, and D-30 howitzer platoons in the Nikolaev region and the Moscow-backed Donetsk People’s Republic.
In Radushnoe, Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, on July 7, Russian forces allegedly used HIMARS rockets to damage a storage facility.
On July 17, Moscow claimed to have destroyed a single HIMARS launcher in Krasnoarmeysk, Donbas, along with a “loading vehicle” for it. The claim was contested because HIMARS does not require additional vehicles or equipment for reloading.
Additional reports of attacks on the systems, which if confirmed would bring the total number of HIMARS units destroyed to six, have been denied by Ukraine.
This Thursday, the Pentagon claimed that there was no solid proof that any of the HIMARS units had been damaged or destroyed.
As Ukraine’s forces are planning a counteroffensive in Kherson, in the southwest, Russian forces have shifted personnel and military equipment convoys there, according to British defense officials.
According to the assessment released by the British Ministry of Defense on Saturday, the development indicated that the war was moving into a “new phase.”
SOURCE: NEWS AGENCIES