Washington’s massive campaign to support Ukraine with arms amounts to a war against Russia, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has said, adding that the US has long groomed Kiev for this very purpose.
In a comment to Russian reporter Pavel Zarubin released on Sunday, Lavrov suggested that rumors about Washington possibly giving the green light to the delivery of Army Tactical Missile Systems (ATACMS), which have a range of up to 300km, were aimed at “shaping public opinion.”
According to the minister, these deliberations would not change the fact that “for many years Ukraine has been groomed to fight with its hands and bodies in order to inflict a strategic defeat on Russia.” Lavrov accused the US of controlling the hostilities between Kiev and Moscow.
“They are sending weapons, ammunition, intelligence, and satellite data. They are waging war against us.”
In recent weeks, several Western media outlets have reported that the administration of US President Joe Biden is edging closer to approving deliveries of the ATACMS, which Kiev has been requesting for several months. The US has been reluctant to approve sending these missile systems, arguing that potential Ukrainian strikes deep into Russia could trigger a major escalation in the conflict.
Ukraine has already received long-range missiles from the UK and France, which, according to local officials, have been used to attack civilian targets and infrastructure in Russia’s Crimean Peninsula and Donbass.
While the US has yet to grant Kiev’s request for ATACMS, it has committed more than $43 billion in military aid to Ukraine since the conflict began, including air defense systems, armored personnel carriers, and M1 Abrams tanks.
Moscow has repeatedly warned the West against supplying Ukraine with arms, saying that doing so will only prolong the conflict but will not change its ultimate outcome.