Germany sends 2,700 anti-aircraft missiles to its arms shipments to Ukraine following a first delivery of defensive weapons, Berlin government officials said Thursday.
The missiles were requested by the Ukrainian government, which is struggling to break Russia’s domination of its airspace as Russian troops intensify their shelling of civilian targets, the official said.
The shoulder-fired weapons, known as Strela, can be used against helicopters and airplanes and will be transported to Ukraine within days. The Soviet-made rockets belonged to the armed forces of the former East Germany and are among the most widespread weapons of that type in the world. They were mothballed years ago and are now stored by the environment ministry.
As part of a recent policy u-turn triggered by the Russian invasion, Germany already approved the shipment to Kyiv forces of 1,000 anti-tank missiles and 500 U.S.-made anti-aircraft weapons known as Stingers.
Berlin also approved the export to Ukraine of German-origin weapons from other nations such as Estonia and The Netherlands.
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