HIMARS has a range of up to 80 km or 50 miles. The United States announced last week that it would send four more HIMARS to Ukraine as they would be at the center of Russian attacks.
But since Kyiv began receiving HIMARS shipments last month, Ukrainian forces have managed to destroy 50 Russian munitions facilities, according to the country’s defense minister.
In a nationally televised address, Oleksiy Reznikov highlighted how HIMARS supported Ukraine’s efforts to repel Russian forces.
He said: “It cuts off their supply chains and takes away their ability to conduct active combat and cover our armed forces with heavy bombardment.”
It comes just days after Russia claimed to have destroyed four HIMARS in Ukraine in July.
The Russian Defense Ministry said on Friday that between July 5 and July 20, “four launchers and a reloading vehicle for American-made Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (HIMARS) were destroyed.”
This was quickly dismissed by Kyiv as “false”.
The Russian Defense Ministry then said on Monday that it had successfully targeted a HIMARS ammunition depot in Bogdanovtsy, western Ukraine.
Ukraine has consistently emphasized the importance of HIMARS in successfully repelling Russian forces.
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Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said the United States had “secretly sent instructors” to Ukraine to help train soldiers in the use of HIMARS.
She added: “Ukrainian forces use everywhere HIMARS received from the United States.”
The US decision to send four more HIMARS to Ukraine, announced by Secretary of State Lloyd Austin on July 20, came after the weapons caught the particular attention of Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu.
Shoigu ordered Russian generals to target HIMARS specifically because of damage to Russian supply lines from long-range artillery.
Austin called the HIMARS an “innovative” weapon in Ukraine’s toolkit, provided by the United States to aid the “brave men and women of Ukraine’s armed forces”.
He said: “(We) will continue to find innovative ways to maintain our long-term support for the brave men and women of the Ukrainian armed forces and we will adapt our assistance to ensure that Ukraine has the technology, ammunition and firepower to defend themselves.”