The delivery to Ukraine of a long-promised air defence system, capable of protecting an entire city, is imminent, German officials said on Monday as Russia conducted a bombing campaign on Ukrainian cities.
"We are doing everything to strengthen Ukraine's air defences," German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock tweeted, calling the Russian strikes of the past few hours "despicable."
In June, Chancellor Olaf Scholz promised Kyiv to deliver Iris-T systems capable, he said, of protecting a large city against air raids. The first of these systems will be delivered to Ukraine "in the coming days," German Defence Minister Christine Lambrecht announced on Monday, adding that three more will be delivered next year.
"The latest rocket attacks on Kyiv and many other cities clearly underline the importance of the rapid delivery of air defence systems to Ukraine," she said.
The Iris-T system has a shield range of 20 kilometres in height and 40 kilometres in width. The German army itself has missiles of the Iris-T type, but not the complete surface-to-air system. It fires the missiles from Tornado or Eurofighter planes.