Ukraine naval procurement: How will it stop Russian cruise missiles?

Image copyright Ukrint Vovodiya/CC BY 2.0 Image caption Ukraine is making a new procurement for the navy

Ukraine is preparing to add equipment that will enable it to shoot down cruise missiles fired from the Black Sea.

The naval procurement is part of a broad programme to modernise Ukraine’s armed forces.

The idea is to respond to the growing threat of attacks by Russia-backed separatists who control territory bordering Russia in eastern Ukraine.

In late February, Russia fired missiles at a Ukrainian military base in the Crimean region.

Some of these attacks have been traced back to possible Russian military movements in and around the Crimea, and there have been a number of warnings in recent weeks from Kiev of heightened tensions on the border.

This is also probably why at the end of February the US Missile Defence Agency granted Ukraine a waiver allowing the Ukrainians to develop the upgraded anti-missile systems.

It’s unknown yet when these systems will be built, or what parts they will be made from.

But the latest discussions suggest that other categories of equipment might also be added, including more weaponry to protect the fleet’s icebreakers.

Western states are mainly concerned about Russian soldiers and equipment over crossing into Ukraine with separatist attacks, but Ukrainians are also worried about the defences of their navy which sees itself, ultimately, as facing a Russian enemy across the sea border.

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