Latvia requests HIMARS Rocket launchers from US
The Latvian Ministry of Defense has requested an undisclosed number of M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) from the US government as part of a Baltic States joint defense initiative.
“We have sent a request to the US government regarding availability and pricing and are currently awaiting a response,” Ministry of Defense State Secretary Jānis Garisons told Latvian news outlet Delfi.
“We hope to receive approval by September, as happened to Estonia, whose purchase of HIMARS was already reported in the press,” he continued.
The ministry requested the training of Latvian soldiers and the purchase of the systems from HIMARS manufacturer Lockheed Martin to be processed and funded with the help of the US government.
The rocket launchers are planned to be commissioned by 2025. However, the ministry expects that acquisition will be slow given the high demand in Ukraine, according to the report.
Bolstering Baltic Defenses
Earlier in July, the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency cleared a $500 million HIMARS sale to fellow Baltic state Estonia.
Lithuania also aims to procure the rocket launchers this year.
“Together with the Latvian and Estonian allies we are looking into developing a HIMARS artillery rocket system capability. Lithuania plans to sign a corresponding contract before the end of this year,” Lithuanian Minister of National Defence Arvydas Anušauskas said during a Baltic Defense Minister meeting with US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin in June.
In the same month, Estonia and Latvia signed a letter of intent for the joint procurement of medium-range rocket systems during a NATO summit held in Madrid in response to the Ukraine-Russia conflict.