As the US ramped up its involvement in the Ukrainian crisis by supplying heavier weapons to Kiev, it also decided to provide intelligence reports that the Ukrainian forces would need to attack targets in Crimea, US media reported on Wednesday. Russia considers the peninsula part of its territory.
“As the conflict evolves, we continue to adjust to ensure that operators have the flexibility to share detailed, timely intelligence with the Ukrainians,” a US intelligence official told the Wall Street Journal about the policy change.
The newspaper said Washington is moving to “significantly expand” intelligence-sharing with Ukraine, but “will refrain from providing intelligence that would enable the Ukrainians to strike targets on Russian territory”. The report, which was confirmed by the New York Times, specifically mentioned Crimea as covered by the new policy.
Moscow disagrees with the US definition of Crimea as part of Ukraine. The region broke away from the country after the 2014 armed coup in Kiev and voted in a referendum to rejoin Russia. Moscow considers Crimea’s status as part of Russia a settled issue.