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Ukraine updates: Germany to send additional Patriot system

Published April 13, 2024last updated April 13, 2024

The delivery of the air defense system by Berlin follows a recent increase in Russian airstrikes on Ukraine. Meanwhile, Russia claims it has captured a village near Avdiivka in Ukraine's Donetsk region. DW has more.

A US Patriot missile defense system pictured during a Israeli-US military exercise on March 8, 2018
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy says his country needs 25 US Patriot systemsImage: JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty Images
Skip next section What you need to know

What you need to know

The German government said Saturday it would send an additional Patriot missile system to help Ukraine's military fend off increased Russian airstrikes.

Kyiv relies heavily on Western Patriot systems as it does not have sophisticated air defenses of its own.

Ukraine's commander-in-chief Oleksandr Syrsky has warned the conditions on the eastern front had "deteriorated significantly" in recent days as Russian forces stepped up their attacks.

Meanwhile, Russia said it had captured a village near the eastern Ukrainian town of Avdiivka.

Here's a look at the latest on Russia's invasion of Ukraine for Saturday, April 13.

Skip next section Ukrainian shelling of Russia-controlled town kills 10, official says
April 13, 2024

Ukrainian shelling of Russia-controlled town kills 10, official says

Ten people were killed during shelling by Ukraine's army in a Russian-controlled town in the southern Zaporizhzhia region, a Russia-installed official said.

Among the dead were three children. Yevgeny Balitsky, the top Moscow-installed official in the Zaporizhzhia region wrote on the Telegram messaging app.

He said a further 18 people had been wounded in Friday night's shelling.

"Two people are reported missing. Debris removal and search continues," he continued.

Another local official installed by Russia, Vladimir Rogov, writing on his Telegram channel, said that five houses had been partially destroyed.

Zaporizhzhia is one of four Ukrainian regions that have been partially occupied by Russian forces and formally annexed by Moscow since the February 2022 invasion.

Skip next section Zelenskyy thanks Germany for new Patriot missile system
April 13, 2024

Zelenskyy thanks Germany for new Patriot missile system

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy thanked his German counterpart Olaf Scholz for committing to supply another Patriot air defense system and missiles.

"I am grateful to the chancellor for the decision to supply another additional Patriot system to Ukraine and missiles to the existing air defense systems. Thanks, Olaf, for your leadership!" Zelenskyy wrote on Telegram.

The Ukrainian leader described the move as "a real manifestation of support for Ukraine at a critical time for us."

He called on other allies to follow Germany's example. 

Ukraine says it needs additional air defense systems from the West to ward off an increase in Russia's missile and drone strikes in recent weeks.

Later Saturday, a spokesperson for Scholz said that the pair had spoken by phone on further efforts to strengthen Ukraine's air defense.

Skip next section Russia claims it seized village near Avdiivka
April 13, 2024

Russia claims it seized village near Avdiivka

Moscow said it had captured a village near the eastern Ukrainian town of Avdiivka.

The Russian Defense Ministry said troops had "liberated" the village of Pervomaiske in the Donetsk region.

Pervomaiske lies to the south of the largely destroyed industrial town of Avdiivka, which Russia fully captured in the middle of February.

The Ministry of Defense of Ukraine denied the Russian claims while acknowledging fierce fighting in the area.

"Enemy assault groups reached outside the outskirts of the place at night. Bohdanivka is now under the control of the defense forces," Kyiv said.

Skip next section Eastern front has 'deteriorated significantly,' Ukraine says
April 13, 2024

Eastern front has 'deteriorated significantly,' Ukraine says

Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Oleksandr Syrskyi warned on Saturday that the situation on the eastern front had "deteriorated significantly" in recent days.

The comments come after Russia began to make inroads in Ukraine's eastern region of Donetsk this year as Kyiv's forces are dogged by manpower and ammunition shortages, amid delays in Western aid. 

"The enemy is actively attacking our positions in the Lyman and Bakhmut sectors with assault groups supported by armored vehicles. In the Pokrovsk sector, they are trying to break through our defense using dozens of tanks and armored personnel carriers," the commander-in-chief said.

Ukraine has said the situation around the eastern frontline city of Chasiv Yar is "difficult and tense" with the area under "constant fire." Chasiv Yar lies 20 kilometers (12 miles) west of Bakhmut, which was flattened by months of artillery fire before being seized by Moscow's forces last May.

Syrskyi took over as commander-in-chief in February after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy fired his popular predecessor, Valery Zaluzhny. 

Skip next section Germany announces new Patriot missile system to Ukraine
April 13, 2024

Germany announces new Patriot missile system to Ukraine

Germany will send an additional Patriot air defense system to Ukraine, the German Federal Ministry of Defense said Saturday.

"Due to the increase in Russian airstrikes against Ukraine, the German government has decided to further strengthen Ukrainian air defense," a statement from the ministry said.

Ukraine has received several air defense systems during the first two years of war, including the US-made Patriot system to help defend against Russian drone and cruise missile attacks.

Kyiv says it needs 25 Patriot units total to cover the country —  and at least seven urgently, according to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

Ukraine air defense depleted as Russia hits power plants

On Friday, the US said it would sell Ukraine up to $138 million (€129.3 million) of equipment to maintain and upgrade its HAWK air defense systems.

Washington began shipping HAWK interceptor missiles to Ukraine in 2022 as an upgrade to the shoulder-launched Stinger air defense missile systems — a smaller, shorter-range system.

mm/wd (Reuters, AP, AFP, dpa)