NASAMS Missiles in $125M Military Aid to Ukraine

Ukraine presently operates two NASAMS air defense systems
  • Bureau
  • 04:51 AM, November 4, 2023
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NASAMS Missiles in $125M Military Aid to Ukraine
NASAMS air defense system @Lithuania

A mix of weaponry that includes National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems (NASAMS), ammunition for High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, artillery rounds, TOW missiles and Javelin and AT-4 antiarmor systems is earmarked for Ukraine in the latest $125 million defense package.

This package is the 50th of its kind since August 2021.

The latest defense package also comprises laser-guided munitions to counter unmanned aerial systems, over 3 million rounds of small arms ammunition, grenades, demolitions munitions for obstacle clearing, Claymore antipersonnel munitions, 12 trucks for heavy equipment transportation, cold weather gear, and spare parts, maintenance, and field equipment.

The package utilizes security assistance from Defense Department inventories, valued at up to $125 million, authorized for Ukraine under prior fiscal years' presidential drawdown authority. Furthermore, it incorporates $300 million from the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI), leveraging funding made available through the recent congressional continuing resolution, which exhausts the remaining funds allocated to support Ukraine.

The Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI) stands apart from the presidential drawdown as it allows the United States to procure capabilities directly from industry for Ukraine.

President Joe Biden has urged Congress to provide additional funding for Ukraine, citing the urgency of the situation. During an October 31 Senate Appropriations Committee hearing, Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III emphasized the need for supplemental aid to help Ukraine continue defending itself against Russia's ongoing aggression.

Currently, Ukraine operates two NASAMS air defense systems, with the U.S. and Canada ordering six and one, respectively, as part of their military aid packages. International allies, including Norway and Lithuania, have also joined forces, with Norway pledging two NASAMS fire platoons and Lithuania procuring two NASAMS launchers for Ukraine in June.

The NASAMS system, with a maximum range of 50 kilometers, is equipped with AIM-120 AMRAAM interceptor missiles, the same type used in Western air-to-air engagements.

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