Germany announced the delivery of two more Patriot missile launchers to Ukraine, which Zelensky said will help Kyiv establish a comprehensive air defense shield.
Statistical data released by the German government on August 9 shows that the country has supplied two more anti-aircraft missile launchers to Ukraine but without radar or missiles. Each complete Patriot complex includes a command vehicle, a warning and firing radar, a generator, a communication station and 6-8 launchers.
“This is exactly what we have agreed with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. Thank you very much, Olaf; these are the necessary weapons to protect the people from the threat from Russia. They will bring Ukraine closer To a comprehensive air defense shield covering the whole country,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said.
In addition to the Patriot missile launcher, Germany also transferred to Ukraine 28 more Bandvagn 206 all-terrain vehicles, thousands of 155 mm smoke cannon rounds, 4 Vector reconnaissance drones and a number of motorized vehicles.
The government of Prime Minister Scholz has been hesitant to give arms to Ukraine due to fear of escalating tensions with Russia. Pressure from Washington and its European allies led Berlin to change its policy, providing more and more modern weapons and becoming the second largest arms donor to Kyiv.
Ukraine is staffing two Patriot systems transferred by the US, Germany and the Netherlands to protect key targets in Kyiv. One complex was damaged in a Russian missile attack on the morning of May 16, but Ukraine claims it is still capable of combat.
Patriot is expected to be a weapon that can significantly change the situation in the sky over Ukraine thanks to its superior combat capability compared to the air defense systems that Washington once transferred to Kyiv. In an interview on June 3, President Zelensky said he wanted Ukraine to have up to 50 Patriot batteries because it is “the only system capable of intercepting several advanced Russian missiles.”
However, experts warn that Patriot cannot solve all of Ukraine’s air defense problems.
One of the barriers to the deployment of Patriot systems in Ukraine is operating costs. A report last year by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) said that each Patriot battery costs about $ 1.1 billion, of which a missile shell costs about $ 4-8 million to build, depending on the version.
Russia has recently increased its use of missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) against Ukrainian targets. Western experts believe this is an attempt to neutralize Ukraine’s air defense complexes, especially the Patriot system, and to deplete anti-aircraft ammunition by forcing them to fire expensive missiles to destroy them continuously. Deal with cheap UAVs or missiles.