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A Patriot anti-aircraft missile system launcher stands at the air base on June 17, 2023, in Bavaria, Germany. (Karl-Josef Hildenbrand/picture alliance via Getty Images)
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Kyiv is pushing Washington for the joint production of Patriot air defense systems to help Ukraine fend off Russia's war, Ukrainian Ambassador to the U.S. Oksana Markarova said in an interview with European Pravda on April 23.

Ukraine is facing a shortage of air defense systems amid an uptick in Russian attacks on population centers and energy infrastructure. U.S.-made Patriot systems are highly effective at intercepting Russia's ballistic and cruise missiles.

According to President Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine needs 25 Patriots to protect the country from Russian attacks, but Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said he is for now focused on securing seven to protect Ukraine's largest cities.

The joint production of Patriots was one of the top issues discussed during Zelensky's visits to the U.S., according to Markarova.

"This is a major global strategic task and an element of economic cooperation. But it is also an increase in combat capability and production of the capabilities that Ukraine needs immediately," the ambassador said.

Representatives of Ukrainian and U.S. businesses have already reportedly met to discuss investment and cooperation not only in weapons, but also in materials needed to launch the production.

"We should start producing a lot of products ourselves, at least components, and at most already completed products," Markarova added.

Ukraine has agreements on joint defense production with a number of countries, including the U.S.

Kyiv and Washington signed a statement of intent on the co-production of weapons in December 2023.

The agreement between the two nations will reportedly contribute to the construction of production facilities in Ukraine to supply the military with arms, in particular air defense equipment and ammunition, as well as repair and maintenance services.

Media: Greece preparing to give Ukraine at least 1 Patriot system, possibly 2
The news follows a story by the Financial Times (FT) on April 22, in which official sources said that Greece and Spain were under specific pressure from the EU to provide additional air defense systems to Ukraine.
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