Romania weighs options for Patriot system transfer to Ukraine


Romania is currently discussing the potential transfer of Patriot air defense systems to Ukraine, though a definitive solution has yet to be determined, Prime Minister Marcel Ciolacu revealed in a June 1 interview with Euronews.

The final decision will be up to the Supreme National Defense Council.

"The proposal to transfer the Patriot air defense system to Ukraine is under analysis," the Prime Minister stated.

Ciolacu emphasized that such discussions should remain confidential. "I know this is an interesting topic," he said, adding, "I would even say that it's 'breaking news,' but I believe we have reached a level of political maturity where we can avoid public discourse on such critical matters."

Read also: U.S. looking to send another Patriot system to Ukraine, Europe also looking at options

Romania agreed to purchase the Patriot systems in 2017, but as of now, only one system is operational, according to Euronews.

Previously, Romanian President Klaus Iohannis mentioned that Romania would only be able to provide Ukraine with the Patriot air defense system if it received something in return.

Additional air defense for Ukraine

Western partners are reluctant to give Ukraine "five to seven" Patriot systems, despite having over 100, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said on April 3.

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Ukraine needs 25 Patriot systems or their equivalents to fully protect its airspace from Russian attacks, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on April 6.

Russia would not have destroyed the Trypillia thermal power plant if Ukraine had enough Patriot systems, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said on April 12.

G7 foreign ministers meeting in Italy pledged to help Ukraine strengthen its air defense on April 19.

The U.S. is considering providing Ukraine with another Patriot battery to bolster its air defense capabilities, Bloomberg reported on May 15.

Read also: Spain providing Leopard tanks and Patriot air defense missiles in latest military aid package to Ukraine

Zelenskyy suggested NATO countries might support transferring seven Patriot air defense systems to Ukraine at the Washington summit in July, The New York Times wrote on May 21.

Spain and Greece have so far refused to redeploy their systems, although Madrid is sending missiles. Poland also declined to transfer one of its batteries.

The Dutch Defense Ministry announced plans on May 28 to quickly assemble and deliver a Patriot system to Ukraine.

Germany will provide Ukraine with a Patriot system as part of a new €500 million military aid package, the German Foreign Ministry confirmed on May 31.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine