German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has pledged to send Ukraine high-tech anti-aircraft systems as Germany looks to quell criticism from opposition members that it hasn’t provided enough military aid in the fight against Russia’s unprovoked invasion.
Speaking to lawmakers in Berlin on June 1, Scholz said the government had approved a proposal to ship IRIS-T missiles and radar systems to Kyiv as Russia continues to pound targets in eastern Ukraine.
The goal is to ensure that Russian President Vladimir Putin “does not win” the war he started in Ukraine, Scholz said.
“Our goal is for Ukraine to be able to defend itself and succeed in doing so,” he added.
Russia has stepped up its offensive to take further ground in areas where Moscow-backed separatists already have a foothold as Western nations rush to get weapons to Ukraine, which lacks the firepower of Russia.
Scholz’s announcement comes hours after U.S. President Joe Biden said Washington will provide Ukraine with advanced rocket systems that can strike with precision at targets up to 80 kilometers away.
The rocket system known as HIMARS, can be used both to intercept Russian artillery and to take out Russian positions in towns where fighting is intense, such as Syevyerodonetsk.