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NATO Prepares to Enhance Ukraine’s Air Defense, Announcements Expected Soon

BRUSSELS — NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg confirmed on Friday that the alliance has air defense systems ready for deployment to Ukraine, with official announcements anticipated shortly. This development emerged after a virtual meeting involving Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and NATO defense ministers.

The NATO-Ukraine Council convened this emergency session at the request of President Zelenskyy, responding to intensified missile attacks by Russia on Ukrainian civilian targets. This meeting precedes a critical vote in the U.S. Congress on whether to approve a substantial $60 billion military aid package for Ukraine.

“NATO defense ministers have committed to enhancing their military support to Ukraine, including the provision of additional air defense capabilities. We have identified available systems within the alliance that can be deployed to support Ukraine,” Stoltenberg stated during a press briefing.

He added, “I anticipate we will soon be making new announcements regarding the air defense capabilities to be provided to Ukraine. There will be concrete developments announced shortly, based on the details that were discussed today.”

While the discussions included various defense systems, the focus was primarily on the Patriot system. Stoltenberg also noted, “In addition to the Patriot systems, there are other weapons, such as SAMP/Ts, that allies are prepared to supply. Furthermore, several member states, lacking available systems, have pledged financial contributions to assist in procuring these critical defenses for Ukraine.”

In efforts to meet immediate needs, NATO is actively engaging with the defense industry to increase production and refurbish existing systems, ensuring they are operational and suited to the requirements of the Ukrainian military.

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