Depots packed with US-made shells and rockets in Ukraine have been hit by missile strikes, Russia says
Russian warships have destroyed stocks of US-supplied ammunition, by striking arms depots in Ukraine’s central Dnepropetrovsk Region with Kalibr cruise missiles, the defense ministry said on Monday.
“Stores of ammunition for US-delivered HIMARS multiple rocket launchers and M772 howitzers, as well as for 2S7 Pion self-propelled guns have been destroyed,” Defense Ministry spokesman Lieutenant General Igor Konashenkov said during his daily press briefing.
Konashenkov added that Russian aircraft hit the bases of “nationalist battalions and foreign mercenaries” in the eastern city of Kharkov, killing around 250 fighters and destroying up to 25 military vehicles.
The US promised this month to supply Kiev with four additional HIMARS launchers, bringing the total number sent to Ukraine to 12. Speaking to the Wall Street Journal on Sunday, Ukrainian Defense Minister Alexey Reznikov called them a “game-changer” on the battlefield.
Last week, the Russian Defense Ministry claimed that it had wiped out two HIMARS launchers and two ammunition depots. The Ukrainian military dismissed the report as “fake,” insisting that the US-made launchers were inflicting “colossal” damage and casualties on the “occupying forces.”
Russia sent troops into Ukraine on February 24, citing Kiev’s failure to implement the Minsk agreements, designed to give the regions of Donetsk and Lugansk special status within the Ukrainian state. The protocols, brokered by Germany and France, were first signed in 2014. Former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has since admitted that Kiev’s main goal was to use the ceasefire to buy time and “create powerful armed forces.”
In February 2022, the Kremlin recognized the Donbass republics as independent states and demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join any Western military bloc. Kiev insists the Russian offensive was completely unprovoked.