A snapshot of recent news from sources around the world on the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war.
The shifting momentum to provide F-16s to Ukraine won’t impact Kyiv’s anticipated spring counteroffensive. U.S. officials have reiterated that the recent approval for training Ukrainian pilots on the aircraft, as well as any eventual transfer, is meant to support Kyiv’s mid- and long-term defense needs. It remains to be seen where any F-16s donated to Ukraine will come from, or how many aircraft will be handed over. Training could begin in the next few weeks or months.
The U.S. announced a $375 million security assistance package for Ukraine. The equipment will be taken directly from U.S. inventories. The package reflects equipment that has been delivered in recent weeks ahead of Ukraine’s anticipated counteroffensive, including HIMARS ammo, 155mm and 105mm artillery rounds, TOW missiles, Javelin and AT-4 missiles, laser-guided rocket system munitions, demolition munitions, armored bridging systems, armored medical treatment vehicles, trucks and trailers to transport heavy equipment, logistics support equipment, thermal imagery systems, spare parts, and other field equipment.
Poland said it’s ready to help train pilots to fly F-16 fighters, but training has not begun.
The rate of weapons deliveries to Ukraine has accelerated thanks to logistical efficiencies put in place since the start of the war. A U.S. Army spokesperson said deliveries have sped up by 30 percent.
The Ukrainian military is accused of using its new Storm Shadow cruise missiles to attack Berdyansk, a port city occupied by Russian troops. Russian officials say the Storm Shadows have already been used to attack the Russian-held city of Luhansk.
The Ukrainian military might receive TAURUS cruise missiles from Germany. Providing these missiles to Ukraine would allow it to strike Russian military targets deep behind the frontlines.
Diehl Defence, along with Hensoldt and Airbus, has delivered the second fire unit of the IRIS-T SLM air defense system to Ukraine. Two fire units have been handed over to the customer.
The government of Ukraine has requested to buy the National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System (NASAMS), which includes one MPQ-64F1 Sentinel radar. The total estimated cost of this deal is $285 million.