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Air Force: First Patriot air defense system enters combat service in Ukraine

by The Kyiv Independent news desk April 23, 2023 8:44 PM 2 min read
A soldier faces the launcher of a Patriot air defense system during the air defense exercise "Resilient Guard 2020" on Oct. 14, 2020, in Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany. (Thomas Frey/picture alliance via Getty Images)
This audio is created with AI assistance

The U.S. built Patriot air defense system is already on combat service protecting the country from Russia’s attacks after recently arriving in Ukraine, Air Force spokesman Yuriy Ihnat said on April 23.

According to Ihnat, the Ukrainian army will use the most advanced air defense weapon in the U.S. arsenal against Russian air targets that couldn't previously be shot down, including S-300 surface-to-air missiles.

Ihnat also added that he “hopes that there will be results regarding Russian aircraft.”

With Russia's increased use of guided air-dropped bombs on the battlefield in Ukraine, the extended range of the Patriot is expected to help counter this threat in the absence of superior Western fighter jets such as the F-16.

On April 18, the German government’s weekly update reported that Germany has delivered a Patriot air defense system and missiles for it to Ukraine.

One Patriot battery has four to eight launchers designed for four missiles each and it is expected that it will significantly improve the defense of Ukrainian critical infrastructure and cities against Russia’s constant 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.
See also our interview on what is happening in Bakhmut
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