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Biden secretly permits Kiev to use US weapons for deep strikes on Russia — Politico

According to the report, the permission applies to Russian regions that border Ukraine’s northwestern region of Kharkov
US President Joe Biden Yuri Mikhailenko/ TASS
US President Joe Biden
© Yuri Mikhailenko/ TASS

WASHINGTON, May 31. /TASS/. US President Joe Biden gave the Kiev government a secret permission to use US-supplied weaponry for attacking targets deep in the Russian territory, the Politico newspaper reported citing own sources.

According to the report, the permission applies to Russian regions that border Ukraine’s northwestern region of Kharkov.

"The president recently directed his team to ensure that Ukraine is able to use US weapons for counter-fire purposes in Kharkov so Ukraine can hit back at Russian forces hitting them or preparing to hit them," the newspaper quoted its source as saying.

At the same time, the source said that Washington’s policy prohibiting the use of US weapons for long-range strikes inside Russia "has not changed."

The White House, the US Department of State and the Pentagon have not yet replied to a request for a comment from TASS.

In an interview with the Economist, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg suggested NATO allies should reconsider whether Ukraine could use Western-supplied weapons to carry out strikes on military facilities inside Russia's internationally recognized borders. However, Stoltenberg said at a session of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly that there should be no NATO troops on the ground in Ukraine because otherwise, it would be difficult to keep the bloc out of the conflict.

Western countries sending their weapons to Ukraine are divided about limitations on its use. According to Pentagon spokesman Patrick Ryder, the United States is against using US-made weapons outside Ukraine. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has repeatedly stressed that he objects to supplying Kiev with long-range Taurus cruise missiles because this would imply sending German troops to that country to control their use. This, in his words, is a red line he is reluctant to cross.

Meanwhile, The New York Times reported, citing its sources, that after his recent visit to Kiev US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that he planned to suggest that President Joe Biden lift the ban on using American weapons against targets in Russia.

On May 28, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that when speaking about strikes inside Russia, representatives of NATO countries, "should be aware of what they are playing with." According to Putin, Russia is closely monitoring such a discussion. Once Ukraine’s military uses long-range weapons, Moscow will once again have to decide on ‘a sanitary zone,’ Putin said.