Musk says he refused Kyiv request for Starlink use in attack on Russia

WASHINGTON: Elon Musk stated he refused a Ukrainian request to turn on his Starlink satellite tv for pc community in Crimea’s port town of Sevastopol remaining yr to assist an attack on Russia’s fleet there, announcing he feared complicity in a “major” act of warfare.

The billionaire businessman made the remark on his social media platform X after CNN cited a excerpt from a brand new biography of Musk that says he ordered the Starlink community became off close to the Crimean coast remaining yr to disrupt the Ukrainian sneak attack.

In the publish on X – previously referred to as Twitter – overdue on Thursday, Musk stated he had no selection however to reject an emergency request from Ukraine “to activate Starlink all the way to Sevastopol.” He didn’t give the date of the request and the excerpt didn’t specify it.

“The obvious intent being to sink most of the Russian fleet at anchor,” Musk wrote. “If I had agreed to their request, then SpaceX would be explicitly complicit in a major act of war and conflict escalation.”

Russia, which seized the strategic Crimea peninsula in 2014, bases its Black Sea Fleet in Sevastopol and has used the fleet in a de issue blockade of Ukrainian ports since its full-scale invasion in 2022.

The Russian fleet fires cruise missiles at Ukrainian civilian objectives, and Kyiv has introduced assaults on Russian ships the use of maritime drones.

According to CNN, Walter Isaacson’s new biography “Elon Musk,” to be launched by way of Simon & Schuster on Tuesday, says that once Ukrainian explosive-laden submarine drones remaining yr approached the Russian fleet, they “lost connectivity and washed ashore harmlessly.”

It stated Musk’s choice, which left Ukrainian officers begging him to show the satellites again on, was once pushed by way of an acute worry that Russia would reply to a Ukrainian attack with nuclear guns.

CNN stated that consistent with the biography, this was once based totally on Musk’s conversations with senior Russian officers and his fears of a “mini-Pearl Harbor.”

In August, a Russian warship was once critically broken in a Ukrainian naval drone attack on Russia’s Black Sea military base at Novorossiysk, the primary time the Ukrainian military has projected its energy to this point from the rustic’s shores.

SpaceX, via non-public donations and beneath a separate contract with a US international assist company, has been offering Ukrainians and the rustic’s army with Starlink web provider, a fast-growing community of greater than 4,000 satellites in low Earth orbit, because the starting of the warfare in 2022.

The Pentagon stated in June that SpaceX’s Starlink had a Department of Defense contract to shop for satellite tv for pc products and services for Ukraine.

Commenting on the experiences on Ukrainian nationwide tv, Vadym Skybytskyi, an officer in the Ukrainian Defence Ministry’s Intelligence Directorate GUR, did indirectly deal with whether or not Musk had declined Ukraine’s request. But he stated it was once essential to analyze and to “appoint a specific group to examine what happened.”

A Pentagon spokesperson declined to remark on Musk’s choice however stated, “The Department continues to work closely with commercial industry to ensure we have the right capabilities the Ukrainians need to defend themselves.”

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