UK to supply Ukraine with air defense missiles
Britain will be sending hundreds of drones to support Ukraine's intelligence services and 18 howitzer artillery weapons.
The United Kingdom announced on Thursday it would supply Ukraine with air defense missiles to confront Russia and will for the first time provide rockets with the capabilities to shoot down cruise missiles.
This announcement came after Western allies vowed on Wednesday to rapidly deliver new air defenses to Ukraine in order to increase its security capabilities.
Following a bombing at a bridge leading to the occupied Crimean peninsula, Russian President Vladimir Putin launched a barrage across Ukraine on Monday. "The AMRAAM rockets... will be provided in the coming weeks for use with the NASAMS air defense systems pledged by the US," the British Defense Ministry said in a statement.
"The rockets will help to protect Ukraine's critical national infrastructure," it said.
In addition to the 64 already sent, Britain claimed it will send hundreds of drones to support Ukraine's intelligence services, as well as 18 howitzer artillery weapons."These weapons will help Ukraine defend its skies from attacks and strengthen their overall missile defense alongside the US NASAMS," British Defence Minister Ben Wallace said.
Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky called on the G7 group of affluent nations, including Britain, on Tuesday to assist Kiev in constructing an "air shield".
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg stated that the "top priority" of Ukraine's Western backers was to supply more air defenses for confrontation. Moreover, defense ministers from the Western military alliance are meeting on Thursday in Brussels.
This comes after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was assured on October 11 by US President Joe Biden that the US still intends to ship air defense systems to Ukraine alongside security assistance. The latest security package issued by Biden for the war in Ukraine entails $625 million worth of HIMARS missiles, ammunition, and vehicles.
According to a statement by the White House, the talks were in light of Russia's strike on Ukraine’s energy, military, and telecom facilities as a response to Ukraine's bombing of Crimea's Kerch bridge.