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Yermak: 'I can tell you for sure – there will be more Patriots'

by Chris York April 24, 2024 3:09 PM 3 min read
A Patriot anti-aircraft missile system launcher stands at an air base on June 17, 2023, in Bavaria, Germany. (Photo by Karl-Josef Hildenbrand/picture alliance via Getty Images)
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More Patriot air defense systems are on their way to Ukraine "for sure," Head of the Presidential Office Andriy Yermak said on April 24.

Ukraine is facing a shortage of air defense systems amid an uptick in Russian attacks on population centers and energy infrastructure.

Speaking on national television, Yermak said Kyiv was "talking with many partners, primarily the U.S." about securing more of the badly needed systems and referred to recent news of German efforts to convince Washington to send more.

"I can tell you for sure – there will be more Patriots. For us, the secondary issue is where they will get to us from, the main thing is they will get here, and they get here as soon as possible, because this is about protecting our cities, protecting our people," he said.

"I am sure we will hear good news soon," Yermak added.

U.S.-made Patriots are highly effective at intercepting Russia's ballistic and cruise missiles. Berlin is reportedly pressuring NATO and European allies to send their systems to Kyiv rather than keeping them unused.

Germany said on April 13 that it would provide Ukraine with one more Patriot air defense system to fend off increased Russian attacks. The new pledge will bring the total number of Patriots supplied to Ukraine by Germany to three.

The German allocation of three Patriots would constitute a quarter of the country's arsenal, a far larger proportion than that of the U.S., wrote Bloomberg.

US Senate passes $61 billion in aid to Ukraine
The U.S. Senate passed the foreign aid bill in a vote on April 23, paving the way to provide $60.84 billion for Ukraine.

Elsewhere, Greece is preparing to give Ukraine at least one Patriot air defense system, the Greek media outlet Pronews reported on April 22, citing government sources.

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.

Escalating Russian strikes and resulting civilian casualties underscore Ukraine's dire need for additional air defenses, and while the potential passing of the U.S. aid bill should alleviate some of the need, President Volodymyr Zelensky told an online session of the NATO-Ukraine Council on April 19 that European countries can still do more.

According to  Zelensky, Ukraine needs 25 Patriots to protect the country from Russian attacks.

Kyiv is also pushing Washington for the joint production of Patriot air defense systems, Ukrainian Ambassador to the U.S. Oksana Markarova said in an interview with European Pravda on April 23.

Ambassador: Ukraine in talks to set up joint production of Patriot systems
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.
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