John Kirby: Patriot missiles will go to Ukraine first. Poland and other countries must wait

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Ukraine will receive missiles for Patriot air defense systems first, said John Kirby, spokesman for the US National Security Council. This means that Poland and other countries on NATO's eastern flank will have to wait longer for the ordered missiles. “We must be in solidarity with Ukraine. The decision (…) will not affect the readiness of our units,” assures the Polish Ministry of National Defense.

US National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said delivery delays would not apply Taiwan and Israelbut may include the countries of NATO's eastern flank.

Kirby confirmed the Financial Times' information that missile deliveries to… Ukraine will be prioritized, which means that some other countries will have to wait longer for their orders to be fulfilled. “Reprioritization” is scheduled to last until the end of the next fiscal year USAi.e. for the next 16 months.

A White House representative declined to name the countries affected by the changes, but noted that they would not affect Taiwan and Israel. When asked whether the countries on NATO's eastern flank, such as Poland, would have to wait longer for their missiles, Kirby only said that he would “let individual countries speak for themselves.”

He added, however, that these countries accepted the US decision with understanding, and many of them “fully supported it.”

John KirbySamuel Corum/EPA/PAP

– We are making every effort to minimize any negative impact on the countries affected by the decision. And if any of our partners were in a situation similar to Ukraine, we would also use extraordinary measures to support their defense, Kirby explained, adding that air defense is currently a priority for Ukraine due to the intensification of missile fire from Russia.

It is possible that you will also have to wait for other equipment

At the same time, he did not rule out that a similar “reprioritization” may also affect the Patriot systems themselves, along with launchers, radars and fire control systems. Kirby added that at the same time, the US is constantly in talks about the transfer of Patriot batteries to Ukraine by other countries. On Thursday, it announced the delivery of its system Romania.

Among the countries that have placed orders for missiles for the Patriots is Poland, which also ordered AIM-120 AMRAAM missiles, used both as air-to-air missiles launched from fighter jets and as ammunition for the ground-based NASAMS system.

Ministry of National Defense: we must be in solidarity with Ukraine

“Today, security in Europe depends on the world's actions and decisions. We must be in solidarity with Ukraine. The decision to redirect supplies from orders from US allies and partners will not affect the readiness of our units. Contracts for the Polish Armed Forces will be implemented by the US, the only change concerns postponing the date of some deliveries of a very wide range of weapons and military equipment that we obtain in the United States,” the Ministry of National Defense announced on Thursday, referring to Kirby's declaration.

The Deputy Prime Minister and the head of the Ministry of National Defense also commented on the declaration of the spokesman of the American National Security Council Władysław Kosiniak-Kamyszwho wrote on portal to strengthen Poland's defense potential and our security.

There are at least four Patriot systems in Ukraine

The Financial Times writes that Patriot systems are the most advanced air defense weapon in the American arsenal. They consist of a radar system and mobile launchers that can fire interceptors at incoming missiles or aircraft.

See also: New Patriot systems first for Ukraine. Financial Times information

Soldiers of Ukrainian forces in positions in the Donetsk OblastReuters

Ukraine currently has at least four Patriot systems, supplied by the US and Germany. Since the president this spring Volodymyr Zelensky called for additional supplies, Germany announced it would send an additional battery, and the Netherlands announced an initiative to send another one based on components provided by many countries. Last week, Biden approved the deployment of another Patriot air defense system to Ukraine.

“FT” also reports that Poland, Romania and Germany are among the European countries that have placed orders for Patriot systems. Spain also has an open order for Patriot launchers, while the coalition NATO countries in January, it placed an order for 1,000 Patriot missiles.

New Patriot systems first for UkraineSandra Foyt/Shutterstock

Spain, Greece and Romania have Patriots in their arsenals, but have so far refused to allow the launcher to be transferred to Ukraine. Poland explains that its Patriots protect infrastructure used to transport Western weapons to Kiev and are therefore already deployed to protect Ukraine. Italy said in June it would send Kiev a second SAMP/T air defense system, a European alternative to the Patriot.

Main photo source: Sandra Foyt/Shutterstock





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