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NATO opens way for supplying air defense systems from Slovakia to Ukraine

The Netherlands and Germany, at the request of NATO, will supply Slovakia with American anti-aircraft missile systems Patriot (ADMSs) instead of the S-300 air defense system transferred to Ukraine, the Dutch Defense Ministry reported.

"Germany and the Netherlands will deploy Patriot air defense systems near the Sliac airbase in central Slovakia. Today, the final decision was made that the system will be deployed. They are intended to protect the territory of Slovakia and its inhabitants from any missile threat. Patriot air defense systems will enter combat duty from mid-April," the March 18 report says.

Patriot are transferred to Slovakia on a temporary basis. It is believed that they will be there for six months. 150 military personnel will come from the Netherlands to Slovakia together with the air defense system.

Slovak Defense Minister Jaroslav Nad’ said at a joint press conference with his American counterpart Lloyd Austin on March 17 that Slovakia would transfer its Soviet-made S-300 air defense system to Ukraine if it got a replacement.

"I understand what Ukraine needs now. We are all trying to help Ukraine in any way we can. But I am the Minister of Defense of Slovakia and must first of all meet the needs of national defense. Now we have the only S-300 system in Slovakia, so I can’t give it away without having an alternative," Nad’ said.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov stated on March 18: "The transfer of Soviet S-300s from other countries to Ukraine is impossible and will be illegal without our permission, Moscow will not allow this."

ADMS Patriot (one of its variants)

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