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Official: Patriot systems from US, Netherlands already in Ukraine

by The Kyiv Independent news desk April 19, 2023 5:34 PM 1 min read
Patriot launchers modules mounted on M983 HEMTT part of the US made MIM-104 Patriot surface-to-air missile (SAM) system are pictured on a open field on Feb. 18, 2023 in Zamosc, Poland. (Omar Marques/Getty Images)
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Patriot air defense systems pledged by the U.S. and the Netherlands have arrived in Ukraine, First Deputy Minister of Defense Oleksandr Pavliuk said on April 19.

The Ukrainian official also confirmed the arrival of a Patriot battery from Germany, which Berlin had reported a day before.

The systems will allow the Ukrainian army to defend against Russian cruise missiles and drones, Pavliuk added, thanking the allies for "strengthening Ukraine's air defense."

Pentagon spokesperson Patrick Ryder said on March 30 that 65 Ukrainian soldiers had completed training on Patriot systems at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and returned to Europe.

The U.S. announced it would supply Patriots to Ukraine at the end of December last year, ahead of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's visit to Washington, D.C. Germany and the Netherlands joined the efforts later.

The Patriot system is the most advanced air defense weapon in the U.S. arsenal that Kyiv has been long pleading for.

Patriots aim to significantly improve the defense of Ukrainian cities and critical infrastructure against regular Russian missile attacks.

How repurposed Russian air defense missiles expose holes in Ukraine’s sky
Russia’s missile strike on Jan. 14 caught Kyiv residents off-guard. After nearly a year of Moscow’s repeated attacks, something unusual happened: The explosions sounded before the air raid alert went off, which is rarely the case in what is believed to be the most protected city in Ukraine.
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