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24 May, 2024 15:26

Western weapons already striking Russian territory – Lavrov

Kiev has been using foreign-supplied arms to attack civilian infrastructure, Moscow’s foreign minister says
Western weapons already striking Russian territory – Lavrov

The West is already “at war” with Russia and the weaponry it supplies to Ukraine is being actively used to strike deep inside the country, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told reporters on Friday. 

The top diplomat has dismissed repeated claims by the US and its allies that they somehow restrict Kiev from using Western-supplied weapons to attack Russian territory. Any such statements are “tricks” that the “Americans are trying to feed to their public opinion or to NATO members,” Lavrov argued. 

“American weapons are already being used against various targets outside the combat zone,” he added. “We proceed from the fact that American and other Western weaponry strikes targets on the territory of Russia, primarily civilian infrastructure and residential areas.” 

While Lavrov did not cite specific cases, the latest incident involving Western-supplied weapons came on Thursday evening, when two civilians were killed during a Ukrainian attack on Crimea with US-made ATACMS ballistic missiles packed with cluster warheads. The Russian military reported the interception of three such munitions in the area, with the region’s governor, Sergey Aksyonov, stating the attack had also damaged an empty commercial property near the city of Alushta.

Lavrov’s remarks come amid a renewed push in the US to officially allow Kiev to use American weaponry to strike targets in Russia. Earlier this week, a group of US congressmen appealed to Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, asking him to permit Kiev to do so, as well as to increase overall military assistance to Ukraine. In addition, US media reports have suggested Secretary of State Antony Blinken has been actively pushing the administration of President Joe Biden to enable Kiev to strike deep into Russia.

The contrasting positions of Moscow and the collective West apparently stems from differences on what exactly they acknowledge as Russian territory. Moscow treats formerly-Ukrainian territories, namely Crimea, the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, and Kherson and Zaporozhye regions, as integral parts of its territory, while Kiev and its Western backers still consider them to be Ukrainian.

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