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The US is said to be sending a second Patriot to Ukraine, where it's played havoc with Russian jets and missiles

Mia Jankowicz,Sinéad Baker   

The US is said to be sending a second Patriot to Ukraine, where it's played havoc with Russian jets and missiles
  • The US has agreed to send a second Patriot system to Ukraine, according to reports.
  • Ukraine has been given a handful of the missile systems from its allies, but says it needs more.

A second US Patriot system is headed for Ukraine following appeals for further air defenses, according to reports.

The MIM-104 Patriot missile system has been hailed as a major success in Ukraine, shooting down Russian missiles and aircraft as Ukraine fights back against Russia's invasion.

But Ukraine says it does not have enough of them, or enough air defense systems in general.

Ukraine currently has at least three, and possibly five, Patriots, supplied by the Netherlands, Germany, and the US.

Their exact number and deployment has not been disclosed.

But US President Joe Biden approved the transfer of a second battery from the US last week, unnamed senior military and administration officials told The New York Times.

The system is to be relocated from Poland, where it has been protecting US troops in training who are due to return home, officials told the outlet.

Two unnamed officials confirmed the matter to the Associated Press.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in April that Ukraine needs 25 Patriot systems, with between six and eight batteries each, to protect its skies.

Patriots are expensive, and it takes a long time to produce new ones, meaning many of Ukraine's allies have been reluctant to part with ones from their own arsenals.

But Ukraine's foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, said in April that his team had identified more than 100 Patriot air-defense systems that its allies could spare, and said he couldn't understand why its allies were not willing to give Ukraine at least one of their existing systems.

While expressing gratitude for US aid, Kuleba said: "Do you sincerely believe that the whole US Army does not have one spare battery of Patriots that is not on combat duty and that cannot be given to Ukraine? I don't."

Patriots have performed so well in Ukraine that it has dispelled doubts about the effectiveness of the weapons system, which lingered before Russia's full-scale invasion, experts previously told Business Insider.

Germany said in April that it would send Ukraine another Patriot battery, and Ukraine is also set to get more Patriot missiles from other countries.

Germany's defense minister said on Tuesday that 32 Patriot missiles had been delivered to Ukraine from its European allies, and that 68 more would be delivered soon.

He announced the delivery "after I saw how critical Ukraine's air defense is for its survival," he said.

News of further Patriot support comes as Russia continues its attacks across Ukraine.

Kuleba said in May that Ukraine urgently needed two Patriot batteries to help protect the Kharkiv region in the northeast of the country, the Times reported.

The additional defenses come after Ukraine started to run critically low on air defenses and other weaponry, after Republicans stalled further US aid to the country for six months, before finally agreeing to resume it in April.


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