National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby doubled down on the U.S. decision to send cluster munitions to Ukraine, saying that it will keep the country “in the fight.”
“This is about keeping Ukraine in the fight. You were just there. You talk to President Zelenskyy about the counteroffensive, and in some ways, it’s not going as fast as he would like,” Kirby told ABC’s Martha Raddatz on “This Week.”
The Biden administration announced last week that it planned to provide Ukraine with cluster munitions, which contain multiple explosive submunitions. The bombs are banned by many countries due to the risks the explosives may pose to civilians.
President Biden has also defended the administration’s choice, saying it was a “very difficult decision” made after discussing it with allies and lawmakers. Kirby said Sunday that the administration is “mindful” about the risks the bombs will pose to civilians, but noted that Russia is already using these bombs in Ukraine that have killed civilians.
Kirby said that Ukraine will be using the cluster bombs to defend its territory and to target Russian positions.
“We are very mindful of the concerns about civilian casualties and unexploded ordnance being picked up by civilians or children and being hurt. Of course, we’re mindful of that,” Kirby said.
“And I think we can all agree that more civilians have been and will continue to be killed by Russian forces with — whether it’s cluster munitions, drones, missile attacks or just frontal assault than will likely be hurt by the use of these cluster munitions fired at Russian positions inside Ukrainian territory,” he added.
Source: The Hill