Britain pledges anti-ship missiles, cargo drones for Ukraine’s defense

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John Moore
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LONDON — Britain added anti-ship missiles, logistics drones and other key equipment to its list of military equipment heading to Ukraine, according to a Tuesday speech by Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

In a virtual address to the Ukrainian Parliament, Johnson said a further £300 million ($375 million) in arms would be provided to Kyiv.

Johnson is the first Western leader to address the Ukrainian Parliament since Russia invaded in late February.

Since then the British have become a significant supplier of weapons and humanitarian aid as Ukraine’s forces battle to beat off Russian efforts to subjugate the country.

This week it was confirmed that an anti-ship version of the MBDA Brimstone air-to-ground, anti-tank missiles would be heading to Ukraine soon.

Alongside Brimstone, counter battery radars, logistics drones capable of supplying weapons and food, night vision goggles and armored vehicles for evacuation of civilians and protection of officials were among the list of equipment listed by Johnson.

The Daily Telegraph newspaper here said electronic-warfare equipment capable of jamming Russian drones was also included in the package, but there was no mention of the systems in Johnson’s speech.

The latest round of supplies brings the British contribution to around £800 million ($1 billion) supporting Ukraine with weapons and training. Previously, NLAW and Javelin anti-tank missiles, Starstreak anti-air missiles mounted on Stormer armored vehicles, loitering munitions and armored logistics vehicles have been among the growing list of weapons supplied or pledged by the British.

Replacement of at least some of the weapons will be funded by the Treasury here, rather than come out of the defense budget.

“We will carry on supplying Ukraine, alongside your other friends, with weapons, funding and humanitarian aid, until we have achieved our long-term goal, which must be so to fortify Ukraine that no-one will ever dare to attack you again,” Johnson told the Ukrainian Parliament.

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