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The US State Department has approved a possible emergency Foreign Military Sale (FMS) to Ukraine of three High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) and related elements of logistics and programme support, the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) announced on 10 May 2024.

The proposed sale, which is worth an estimated USD 30 million (EUR 27.8 million) and will be funded by the German government on behalf of Ukraine, has been passed to the US Congress for final approval. The sale will be covered by systems drawn from the US Army inventory

“The Secretary of State has determined and provided detailed justification that an emergency exists that requires the immediate sale to the government of Ukraine of the above defense articles and services in the national security interests of the United States, thereby waiving the congressional review requirements under Section 36(b) of the Arms Export Control Act, as amended,” the DSCA stated.

“This proposed sale will support the foreign policy goals and national security objectives of the United States by enhancing Ukraine’s ability to defend itself and respond to continued Russian aggression.”

Since the Russian invasion began in February 2022 the United States has already provided Ukraine with a total of 39 HIMARS units, which offer a range of 300 km when firing Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) rounds (which have been provided to Ukraine). However, on 10 May Russia initiated a major new offensive towards Kharkiv in northeastern Ukraine, which is significantly stretching the Ukrainian Army’s defences.

A US Marine Corps HIMARS exercising at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, in April 2021. The latest three HIMARS units to be to Ukraine will be drawn from the US Army’s inventory and be paid for by Germany. (Photo: USMC)