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Germany to increase air defense support for Ukraine: 5 IRIS-T systems by 2024

Launcher of one of the IRIS-T systems deployed in Ukraine
Launcher of one of the IRIS-T systems deployed in Ukraine

Germany will deliver two more IRIS-T anti-air systems to Ukraine by the end of the year, Martin Eger, Germany’s Ambassador to Ukraine announced on Nov. 11. The move aims to bolster Ukraine’s defense against potential Russian air strikes during the winter of 2023/2024.

Eger made this announcement during the NV Formula for Ukraine’s Success event, emphasizing Germany’s commitment to supporting Ukraine, particularly in the field of air defense. The support includes the supply of advanced systems such as Gepard, IRIS-T, and Patriot.

Read also: Germany provides Ukraine with two more IRIS-T air defense systems in new aid package

“We are very pleased to contribute to this effort; looking ahead to the winter, we will provide additional air defense systems, including Patriot and IRIS-T, with plans for a total of five fully equipped standalone systems featuring radar, command points, and more,” said the Ambassador.

As of now, three IRIS-T systems are already deployed in Ukraine, with the goal of reaching five by the year’s end. Eger believes that this increase in air defense capabilities will significantly enhance the security of Ukrainian cities against potential Russian missile strikes.

Read also: Ukraine will be an asset, not a burden when it joins the EU — FM Kuleba

In addition to air defense, Germany is actively contributing to strengthening the protection of Ukrainian energy infrastructure, emphasizing the importance of a winter without disruptions.

When asked about the future security architecture of Ukraine, Eger suggested a scenario where Ukraine becomes a member of the EU and NATO, receiving additional support through bilateral security agreements. However, he acknowledged the current reality, stating that the envisioned future “will not happen tomorrow or the day after tomorrow.” Despite this, Germany remains committed to supporting Ukraine in military, financial, and humanitarian aspects.

Read also: Germany to transfer more IRIS-T and Patriot systems to Ukraine

Earlier reports in October indicated that Germany had delivered the third IRIS-T SLM air defense system, including medium-range guided missiles, as part of a new military support package. However, confirmation from Air Force spokesperson Yuriy Ihnat is still pending.

IRIS-T, a cutting-edge German anti-aircraft missile system, has demonstrated exceptional effectiveness against Russian missiles and UAVs, solidifying its role in Western support for Ukraine’s defense.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine