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US getting ready to provide sophisticated anti-air defence system to Ukraine

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Joe Biden

Joe Biden

Joe Biden

US President Joe Biden is set to announce that the US is providing advanced an surface-to-air missile system to Ukraine, as well as additional artillery support, in the latest assistance meant to help the country defend against Russia's four-month invasion.

The US is purchasing NASAMS, a Norwegian-developed anti-aircraft system, to provide medium- to long-range defence, according to the person, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

NASAMS is the same system used by the US to protect the sensitive airspace around the White House and US Capitol in Washington.

Additional aid includes more ammunition for Ukrainian artillery, as well as counter-battery radars, to support its efforts against the Russian assault in the Donbas, the person said.

The announcement comes as Biden is huddling with allies this week on supporting Ukraine in meetings at the Group of Seven advanced economies summit in Germany and NATO leaders' annual gathering in Madrid.

Leaders of the Group of Seven economic powers are set to commit themselves to the long haul in supporting Ukraine as they meet in the German Alps and confer by video link with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

The G7 leaders will begin Monday's session of their three-day summit with a focus on Ukraine.

Later, they will be joined by the leaders of five democratic emerging economies — India, Indonesia, South Africa, Senegal and Argentina — for a discussion on climate change, energy and other issues.

The war in Ukraine was already at the forefront of the G7 leaders' minds as they opened their summit at the secluded Schloss Elmau luxury hotel on Sunday — just as Russian missiles hit the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv for the first time in weeks.

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President Biden said Russian President Vladimir Putin "has been counting on, from the beginning, that somehow NATO and the G7 would splinter, but we haven’t and we’re not going to.”

Britain’s Boris Johnson warned the leaders not to give in to “fatigue.”

On Monday, they have the opportunity to demonstrate that unity to Zelensky and reaffirm their commitment to supporting Kyiv financially and otherwise.

Biden hopes to use his trip to Europe to proclaim the unity of the coalition pressing to punish Russia for its invasion of Ukraine as much as he is urging allies to do even more — seeking to counter doubts about its endurance as the war grinds into its fifth month.

The summit's host, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, said last week that he wants to discuss the outlines of a “Marshall plan for Ukraine” with his G7 counterparts, referring to the US-sponsored plan that helped revive European economies after World War II.

With the war still in progress and destruction mounting by the day, it's unlikely to be a detailed plan at this stage.

Scholz has said that “rebuilding Ukraine will be a task for generations.”


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