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March 10, 2022

UK considers sending anti-aircraft missiles to Ukraine

STARStreak anti-air missiles can engage helicopters and high-speed ground attack aircraft.

Understand the impact of the Ukraine conflict from a cross-sector perspective with the Global Data Executive Briefing: Ukraine Conflict

The UK is planning to send anti-aircraft missiles to Ukraine, as the latter continues to battle the invasion of Russian military forces.

According to a Reuters report, the UK is planning to supply STARStreak high-velocity, man-portable, anti-air missiles that can be used to shoot down helicopters and high-speed ground attack aircraft.

UK defence minister Ben Wallace was quoted by the news agency as saying to the legislators: “We believe that this system will remain within the definition of defensive weapons, but will allow the Ukrainian force to better defend their skies.”

He added that an ‘in principle’ decision to supply the weapon system has already been taken, and the government is now weighing supply options.

It also needs to train the Ukrainian fighters on how to use the system, the defence minister added.

Manufactured by Thales, Starstreak is a close-range anti-aircraft weapon system, with a range of up to 7km.

The UK, along with several Western allies, has been supplying military equipment and munition to Ukraine to strengthen its defences.

The UK Government previously supplied thousands of anti-tank missiles to prevent Russian advances.

The US House of Representatives, the lower house in the Congress, has approved $13.6bn worth of aid for Ukraine.

The funding will be used to strengthen the Ukrainian armed forces, as well as provide humanitarian support to the war-affected people.

Russia’s ‘military operation’ in Ukraine has now entered its 14th day. The conflict is said to have displaced more than two million people.

Ukraine has reportedly recalled all its forces involved in UN peacekeeping operations to support the war effort. Approximately 300 Ukrainian troops, police officers, and staff are involved in six missions, reported Reuters.

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