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19 Jan, 2022 08:39

Ukraine gets British anti-tank missiles (VIDEO)

Weapons have been delivered by the UK to Kiev amid the standoff with Russia

Ukraine thanked Britain for a new delivery of weapons on Tuesday. Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Petrenko said the supplies “will be used exclusively for defense purposes,” to protect troops and civilians against “any actions that could lead to escalation.”

Local media reported that the shipment contained shoulder-fired missile systems known as NLAW. They are designed to destroy main battle tanks and other armored vehicles, and were jointly developed by Sweden and the UK.

Ukraine has become increasingly reliant on military assistance from the West in recent years. In 2021, Kiev received 30 Javelin anti-tank missile systems from Washington.

Speaking to LBC radio on Wednesday, British Armed Forces minister James Heappey described Ukraine as “a proud sovereign nation facing an existential threat and knowing to the very core of their being that they will fight every inch.”

“The UK has played our part in helping them with their preparations. We’ve sent thousands of defensive light anti-armor missiles to the Ukrainian Armed Forces,” he added.

The delivery took place as Western leaders and NATO officials continue to insist that Russia is amassing troops and military hardware with the possible intent of invading Ukraine. On the same day, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg again accused Moscow of conducting an “unexplained and unjustified” build-up. Russia has repeatedly denied that it’s planning to attack its neighbor.

Moscow held separate talks with the US, NATO, and the OSCE last week, in an attempt to defuse tensions and receive assurances that the American-led military bloc will not expand further eastward. Russia has consistently said it sees the deployment of Western military along its borders as a threat.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov is set to meet his US counterpart Antony Blinken in Geneva, Switzerland on Friday to discuss further steps to de-escalation.