Yurii Ihnat, the spokesperson of the Ukrainian Air Force, says the goal to acquire about five dozen Patriot air defense systems to protect the skies from Russian missiles is necessary.
Ihnat recalled President Zelenskyy’s remarks, who said Kyiv required 50 batteries of Patriots. “This, of course, is a very ambitious goal, but we will go for it in any case. Both Patriot and SAMP-T work on ballistics, and we also can’t make it without other systems.
Both IRIS-T and NASAMS are the basis of our air defense, which should replace the old Soviet weapons. Therefore, 50 batteries of Patriots should not scare anyone, Ukrainian media reported.
Russia Has Unlimited Missiles
In the face of intense missile attacks from Moscow, a Ukrainian Member of Parliament has claimed that Russia can manufacture sufficient missiles to strike Ukraine two to three times over.
Roman Kostenko, an MP from the Holos party and the Secretary of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security, Defense, and Intelligence, alleged in an interview with Radio NV on June 4 that Russian missile stockpiles are not expected to be depleted anytime soon.
MP Kostenko confidently asserted that he has precise information regarding the number of missiles Russia holds.
Kostenko claimed that based on reports from Ukrainian special services, Russia has abundant resources that would enable them to launch attacks on Ukraine more than two or three times over.
Kostenko emphasized the importance of Ukraine replenishing its air defense supplies and urged Ukrainians to take necessary precautions by seeking shelter when air raid alerts are issued.
Kostenko stated that Russia retains the capability to pose a significant threat to Ukraine for an extended period. He pointed out that despite facing sanctions primarily directed at larger enterprises, Russia has demonstrated the ability to quickly replenish its missile stockpiles.
According to Kostenko, Russia’s capability to manufacture various types of missiles used against Ukraine indicates that the war is unlikely to end soon.
Kostenko underlined the importance of closing Ukraine’s airspace and acquiring fighter jets to bolster their defense capabilities. He also emphasized the need to develop domestic missile production.
Additionally, he advocated for more operations akin to the Shebekino raid to make Russia experience the consequences of its actions.
The Ukranian MP also acknowledged much work to be done and cautioned against giving false assurances of an immediate resolution. He believes victory will only be achieved if everyone stands united and the military industry operates at total capacity.
The statement by the Ukrainian MP suggests that Russia’s existing missile arsenal poses a significant threat to Ukraine’s air defense systems, which may result in the continued or heightened frequency of missile attacks from Moscow in the future.
Meanwhile, Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu previously claimed that the country’s defense industry had begun the mass production of missiles and that plans are underway to double the current production output in the near future.
That being said, given the mounting concerns surrounding a potential Ukrainian counter-offensive, Russia’s recent missile and drone attacks may be aimed at projecting a proactive stance.
Russians Hunting For Ukraine’s Operational Airfields
In the early hours of June 4, an airfield situated in central Ukraine near Kropyvnytskyi was targeted by two Russian missiles. Yuriy Ihnat, the spokesperson for the Air Force Command, highlighted the urgent requirement for Ukraine to strengthen its air defense capabilities throughout the nation.
The purpose is to fortify protection against enemy missile attacks, particularly as operational airfields remain attractive targets for adversaries.
Ihnat provided a detailed account of the Russian air attack in the early hours of June 4. He disclosed that the assault involved six warplanes, each launching a single missile, although the potential for a larger-scale attack existed.
In addition, five attack drones were deployed from the northern direction, targeting infrastructure in Sumy Oblast.
Concerning cruise missiles, Ihnat confirmed that air defenses successfully intercepted four out of the initial six, but two managed to strike the operational airfield near Kropyvnytskyi.
Furthermore, Ihnat voiced his concern over the vulnerability of Ukraine’s numerous operational airfields, which the enemy often targets due to the active presence of Ukrainian aviation.
Ihnat noted that the enemy frequently claims to have “destroyed” multiple planes every week, creating a false narrative.
Despite these claims, the Ukrainian Air Force operates across multiple airfields. In the past day alone, they have conducted over 30 sorties and carried out more than ten airstrikes, Ihnat added.
“Of course, the enemy doesn’t like this,” Ihnat explained.
He said that Ukraine requires Western multipurpose fighter jets to prevent the enemy from approaching their borders and launching guided air bombs against them.
The acquisition of such modern aircraft would serve as a deterrent and enhance Ukraine’s defensive capabilities.