- Sputnik International, 1920, 25.02.2022
Situation in Ukraine
On 24 February, Russia launched a special military operation amid Kiev's ongoing shelling of the DPR and LPR. President Vladimir Putin stated that the op is meant to protect the people of Donbass, and its goal is the complete demilitarisation and denazification of Ukraine.

US Has Been Sending Weapons to Ukraine Since December 2021 – Media

© REUTERS / VALENTYN OGIRENKOUkrainian service members unpack Javelin anti-tank missiles, delivered by plane as part of the U.S. military support package for Ukraine, at the Boryspil International Airport outside Kyiv, Ukraine February 10, 2022. REUTERS/Valentyn Ogirenko
Ukrainian service members unpack Javelin anti-tank missiles, delivered by plane as part of the U.S. military support package for Ukraine, at the Boryspil International Airport outside Kyiv, Ukraine February 10, 2022.  REUTERS/Valentyn Ogirenko - Sputnik International, 1920, 05.03.2022
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Russia has repeatedly warned the US and other countries in the West against "pumping" Ukraine with modern weapons, arguing that it might provoke Kiev into resolving the Donbass conflict via military means. On 24 February, Russia started a special operation in Ukraine amid attacks by Ukrainian forces against the Donbass republics.
The US started to send millions of dollars' worth of lethal weapons and military equipment to Ukraine back in December 2021, The Washington Post has reported, citing obtained declassified accounting of transfers and sales.
According to the documents seen by the newspaper, Washington was sending Ukraine weapons useful for urban combat, such as M141 single-shot shoulder-launched rocket launchers, M500 shotguns, Mk-19 grenade launchers, as well as M134 mini guns, which Kiev could install on military helicopters. In addition, the US reportedly sent protective suits for disposing undetonated explosive ordnances.
The late December shipments cost around $200 million, the documents reportedly show.
Additional shipments of equipment and weaponry for Ukraine worth $350 million were approved in late February 2022. Some $240 million of it has already been delivered, according to The Washington Post citing an anonymous senior defence official. This last shipment included Stinger man-portable air defence systems, the newspaper's source said.
"This is a continuous process. We are always, always looking at what Ukraine needs, and we've been doing this for years now. We have just accelerated our process of identifying requirements and accelerated our consultations as well with the Ukrainians, talking to them daily, as opposed to periodic meetings that we did before this crisis", The Washington Post's source said.
The latest shipments to Ukraine also included Javelin missile systems, which are being used by the Ukrainian military and nationalist battalions to target Russian armoured vehicles. Washington has been shipping and selling Javelins in the hundreds to Ukraine at least since 2018. It ignored calls from Russia to stop "pumping" Ukraine with weapons as Moscow argued it may exacerbate the conflict in Donbass and prompt Kiev to resolve it militarily.
On 24 February, Russian President Vladimir Putin stated that Russia was left with no choice but to start a special military operation in Ukraine, after Kiev failed to implement the Minsk agreements and threatened to obtain nuclear weapons by withdrawing from the Budapest Memorandum. Putin said that the goal of the mission is to demilitarise and de-Nazify Ukraine. Kiev and its western allies call Russia's mission an "invasion", with the Ukrainian government urging NATO to intervene.
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