Germany announced that 70 Ukrainian officers have completed their training course to operate the Patriot air defense system. From now on, the Ukrainian military will be able to work independently with this system, the Bundeswehr said.
70 Ukrainian officers completed Patriot Systems training in Germany
The commander of the Multinational Training Command, Lieutenant General Andreas Marlow, made this statement at one of the German air bases, DW reported.
According to Gen. Marlow, the training course for about 70 soldiers and officers from Ukraine lasted more than six weeks, and the personnel have acquired skills that will allow them to work independently with this air defense system and perform air defense tasks.
Protection of Ukraine’s sky from Russian airstrikes is a top priority – Gen. Marlow
Gen. Marlow noted that the protection of Ukraine’s airspace is a top priority, as Russian strikes are deliberately destroying its civilian infrastructure.
Experienced Ukrainian air defense officers with years of service in the air defense forces attended the training program. Many of the Ukrainian participants in the training had experience with Soviet air defense systems, such as the S-300 air defense system.
Ukrainians shared with Germans what they learned in their battles with Russians
The decisive factor in preparation is motivation and readiness for action, as the German general emphasized. “The second thing is that we have, of course, received a lot of tactical advice from the Ukrainians about what they have learned in their battles with the Russians, from infantry to engineers and air defense.
Based on the experience shared by the Ukrainian officers, the Bundeswehr is revising its own operational principles,” Morlow said.
Germany provides Ukraine with additional Patriot air defense system
Germany promised to deliver another Patriot air defense system to Ukraine for deployment this winter.
The US-made Patriot system is considered one of the most advanced air defense systems in the world. As the practice of its combat use in Ukraine has shown, the system is capable of shooting down helicopters, missiles, and airplanes.
The Patriot air defense system can down ballistic and aerial ballistic missiles, including the Russian “supersonic” X-47 Kinzhal, which Russian propaganda called invulnerable.
The Patriot air defense system in Ukraine has rendered the Russian “supersonic” X-47 Kinzhal, previously considered invulnerable according to Russian propaganda, ineffective.
Germany’s “winter package” of military aid
On the eve of the October meeting of the Contact Group on Ukraine’s defense, the German Defense Ministry announced a “winter package” of military aid totaling about 1 billion euros, which will include air defense systems, including the previously reported additional Patriot and IRIS-T systems.
Ukraine received the previously promised air defense systems: the third IRIS-T SLM (medium-range) and the second IRIS-T SLS (short-range).
In mid-November, the Ambassador of Germany to Ukraine, Martin Jaeger, said that Germany would supply two more IRIS-T air defense systems to Ukraine by the end of the year.
“The defense industry of our country is also interested in building long-term strategic relations with your country. Our support is mainly directed to the air defense industry—Gepard, IRIS-T, Patriot,” the German diplomat said.
Germany to double its military aid to Ukraine in 2024
German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius confirmed media reports that Germany would double its military aid to Kyiv in 2024, calling the plans “a strong signal to Ukraine that we will not abandon it.”
However, Germany has not agreed to provide Ukraine with the Taurus long-range high-precision cruise missiles despite the fact that the US, France and the UK have already delivered Kyiv with such weaponry. Find out more in our article German Defense Minister claims Taurus missiles will not turn the tide of the war.
After almost two years of all-out war with Ukraine, there is still no sign of an end to the conflict. The Russian invading troops continue their assaults on the Ukrainian positions and launch drone and missile strikes on Ukrainian cities.
In this regard, the Patriot and IRIS air defense systems, provided by Germany, are crucial for Ukraine to protect the country, first of all the energy infrastructure, from Russian air strikes.