Pentagon denies US shared intel to target Russian generals

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby
AP/Manuel Balce Ceneta

The Pentagon on Thursday denied that the U.S. has shared intelligence with Ukraine to target Russian military officials after reports emerged the previous day saying U.S. intel had helped Ukraine kill a number of Russian generals.

“The United States provides battlefield intelligence to help Ukraine defend their country,” Pentagon press secretary John Kirby said. “We do not provide intelligence on the location of senior military leaders on the battlefield or participate in targeting decisions of the Ukrainian military.”

Kirby declined to elaborate on specific examples of intelligence sharing from the podium.

However, he noted that Kyiv combines intelligence from multiple sources in order to make battlefield decisions.

“Ukraine combines information that we and other partners provide with the intelligence that they themselves are gathering, and then they make their own decisions and they take their own actions,” he said.

Multiple Russian generals have been killed during the war between the two countries, which as continued into its third month.

The New York Times reported on Wednesday that the U.S. has provided intelligence to Ukraine that helped the country kill several Russian generals. The information, according to newspaper, was part of a program aiming to help Ukraine wit real-time intelligence.

Earlier on Thursday, National Security Council spokesperson Adrienne Watson told The Hill that the U.S. does provide battlefield intelligence to Ukraine but criticized how the Times framed its story.

“The headline of this story is misleading and the way it is framed is irresponsible,” Watson said. “The United States provides battlefield intelligence to help the Ukrainians defend their country.  We do not provide intelligence with the intent to kill Russian generals.”

Aside from intelligence, the U.S. has given Ukraine roughly $3.7 billion in security assistance since the invasion began. The Pentagon has also ramped up training Ukrainian troops on artillery systems.

Updated 3:38 p.m.

Tags John Kirby Pentagon Russia Ukraine

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