Russia Ukraine conflict

US Abrams tanks to arrive in Ukraine ‘soon’: Pentagon chief

Published: Updated:
Read Mode
100% Font Size
3 min read

US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said on Tuesday Ukraine will “soon” receive American M1 Abrams tanks to aid Kyiv's counter-offensive against Russia.

“I'm pleased to announce that the M1 Abrams tanks that the US has previously committed to will be entering Ukraine soon,” Austin said at the Ukraine Defense Contact Group meeting in Germany.

The Pentagon had announced in January that 31 M1A2 Abrams tanks would be delivered to Ukraine, but officials had speculated it would take about a year to make that happen. In March, the US said it will instead send M1A1 Abrams tanks from refurbished hulls already in US inventory, and the delivery will be in the fall — faster than what was initially expected.

The M1A1 Abrams will have “a very similar capability” to the M1A2, Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder said, including advanced armor and weapons systems, such as a 120 mm cannon and 50-caliber heavy machine gun.

“Since our last meeting, the US has committed additional security packages totaling more than $2 billion. Those packages include urgently needed air defense, ammunition, and mine clearing equipment,” Austin added.

For the latest headlines, follow our Google News channel online or via the app.

Austin stressed that Ukraine’s counteroffensive was making “steady” progress. “[Ukraine’s] counter-offensive continues to make steady forward progress. And brave Ukrainian troops are breaking through the heavily fortified lines of Russia's army of aggression.”

“Ukraine’s recent gains also hinge on the crucial capabilities provided by members of this contact group. Our shared commitment will be vital in the coming battles and for the long road ahead,” Austin stated.

Austin highlighted: “In total, the US and Ukraine’s global partners have committed more than $76 billion in direct security assistance to Ukraine’s defense.”

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba had said in June there was “hope” that Ukraine could get the Abrams tanks in time for Kyiv’s offensive against Russia.

Austin’s remarks come amid intense clashes between Ukraine and Russia’s forces across multiple, wide-spread battlefronts, after Kyiv launched its counter-offensive to reclaim Russian-occupied territories months ago.

Read more:

Ukraine says destroyed 27 drones, Iskander ballistic missile in Russian attack

Russia says Su-34 strikes Ukrainian brigade’s deployment point in Kupyansk direction

Erdogan: I trust Russia ‘as much as I trust West’, Ukraine war ‘will last long time’

Top Content Trending