The UK will supply Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS) to Ukraine to help the country defend against Russian aggression, the Defense Secretary has announced.
On the razor wire M270 weapon system, which can hit targets up to 80 km away with pinpoint accuracy, will provide a significant increase in the capabilities of Ukrainian forces. The UK decision was closely coordinated with the US decision to offer the HIMARS (High Mobility Artillery Rocket System) variant of the MLRS.
Alongside the weapon system, the UK will also supply M31A1 ammunition on a large scale.
Ben Wallace’s decision follows Ukrainian forces’ requests for longer-range precision weapons to defend against heavy Russian artillery, which has been used to devastating effect in the eastern Donbass region.
Defense Secretary Ben Wallace said:
The UK stands with Ukraine in this fight and plays a leading role in providing its heroic troops with the vital weapons they need to defend their country against an unprovoked invasion. If the international community continues to provide support, I think Ukraine can win.
As Russia’s tactics change, our support for Ukraine must also change. These high-performance multiple launch rocket systems will better protect our Ukrainian friends against the brutal use of long-range artillery, which Putin’s forces have used indiscriminately to raze cities.
Ukrainian troops will be trained in the use of the launchers in the UK, to maximize the effectiveness of the systems. Britain had previously announced that Ukrainian personnel would be trained in the use of various armored vehicles donated by the UK, including Mastiff, Husky and Wolfhound.
The UK was the first European country to provide lethal aid to Ukraine and has since supplied thousands of anti-tank missiles, anti-aircraft systems and armored vehicles to Ukrainian forces.
Britain has also played a leading role in coordinating international military aid donations, with Ben Wallace hosting two international donor conferences to coordinate support from 35 partner nations, while RAF aircraft flew in thousands of tons of military aid from donors around the world to Ukraine.
The UK will continue to provide aid to ensure Ukraine has what it needs to defend itself against brutal Russian aggression.