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4 NASAMS systems announced for Ukraine among $1.3 billion US military aid package

by Elsa Court and The Kyiv Independent news desk July 19, 2023 9:08 PM 2 min read
Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin (L) and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark MIlley (R) participate virtually in a meeting of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group on July 18, 2023 at the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)
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The Biden Administration has announced a new military aid package for Ukraine worth $1.3 billion, as stated in a U.S. Defense Department press release on July 19.

Included in the package are four NASAMS (National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems) medium range air defense systems, as well as Phoenix Ghost and Switchblade Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS).

NASAMS has been in service in Ukraine since November 2022, when the first systems were delivered in the midst of Russia's mass missile campaign against Ukrainian energy infrastructure. The system is seen to be particularly useful Ukraine due to the large stocks in NATO countries of the AIM-120 AMRAAM missiles used.

The statement added that the U.S. continues to meet build Ukraine's  capacity to "defend its territory and deter Russian aggression over the mid and long term."

The latest pledges are made under the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI), under which Washington purchases equipment from the arms industry or U.S. partners to send to Ukraine, rather than pull from the country's own existing stocks.

The announcement comes the day after a virtual meeting of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group, also known as the Ramstein Group, on July 18.

The meeting was attended by Ukrainian Minister of Defense Oleksii Reznikov and hosted by the U.S. Department of Defense.

The package also includes precision aerial munitions, 152mm artillery rounds, mine clearing equipment, electronic warfare and drone detection equipment, and port security equipment. 165 tactical vehicles and 150 fuel trucks are also listed.  

"The United States will continue to work with its Allies and partners to provide Ukraine with capabilities to meet its immediate battlefield needs and longer-term security assistance requirements," the statement concluded.

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