Friday 12 April 2024 - 03:05

Ukraine Begs for Air Defense Systems, Fighter Aircraft

Story Code : 1128092
Ukraine Begs for Air Defense Systems, Fighter Aircraft
Zelensky announced it on Facebook and released a video of his address, Ukrinform reported.

Ukraine does not ask too much. We need air defense systems and fighter aircraft that can protect our cities from Russian attacks, he said. 

"Few dozen systems and a sufficient number of modern jets – and there will be no problem of Russian jets and bombs. We need artillery to move the frontline away and restore normal life in the territories occupied by Russia," he added.

According to Zelensky, Ukraine needs justice - "such pressure on Russia that won't allow President Vladimir Putin to increase his military potential – growing sanctions against Russia, confiscating Putin's assets and zero toleration of Russian disinformation".

"It is all absolutely realistic. And it depends only on the political will of our partners. Putin can fill with his aggression only the deficit of the world's decisions. Deficit that takes too long. It is possible to win this war. But deficits do not advance victory," the president continued.

Western countries have ramped up military and financial aid to Ukraine since the start of Russia's military operation in February 2022. The Kremlin has consistently warned against continued arms deliveries to Kiev, warning they would lead to further escalation of the conflict.

Moscow has repeatedly warned that deliveries of weapons to Kiev by the US, EU and their allies will not prevent it from achieving the goals of its military operation and will only increase the risk of a direct confrontation between Russia and NATO. 

According to Russian officials, the provision of arms, intelligence-sharing, and training of Ukrainian troops means that Western nations have already become de-facto parties to the conflict.

Russia’s Defense Ministry has recently published statistics detailing the aid supplied to Ukraine from abroad during the conflict with Russia. 

According to its figures, Kiev’s foreign backers together have spent more than $203 billion on assisting the government of Zelensky.

Some 54 countries have been providing assistance to the Ukrainian forces amid the fighting with Russia, the ministry said in a report in early January.

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has also said in an interview published Wednesday that he plans to sharpen his rhetoric in requests to Western allies for more weapons.

In an interview with The Washington Post, Kuleba stressed the urgency of getting military aid to the front lines and resolved to change his approach.

“Nice and quiet diplomacy didn’t work,” he stressed.

The top diplomat added he hopes a tougher approach will break through with Western allies, whose aid to the war-torn country has declined in recent months. In the United States, Congress has been sitting on a roughly $60 billion aid package for Ukraine that President Joe Biden requested at the end of last year.

“Yes, people may hate me, and I may ruin the relationship,” Kuleba told the WaPo.

“The other part of me is saying diplomacy is all about private relations. But then I told that part to shut up, and the part of me that wanted to speak out started speaking up. We’ve tried everything, and nothing seems to work,” he continued.

The minister stated the US-designed Patriot air defense system is the country’s top priority.

Kuleba’s sharper rhetoric has been evident in some of his recent interviews.

Late last month, in an interview with Politico, Kuleba said, “Give us the * Patriots.”

“If we had enough air defense systems, namely Patriots, we would be able to protect not only the lives of our people, but also our economy from destruction,” he added.

Congress returned to Washington this week after a two-week holiday recess. Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) has stated he plans on putting a Ukraine aid package on the floor for a vote, but he has yet to say publicly what that package would include.