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Current level of air defence allows Ukraine to avoid unnecessary interruptions when MiG aircraft take off – Zelenskyy

Friday, 17 November 2023, 19:47
Current level of air defence allows Ukraine to avoid unnecessary interruptions when MiG aircraft take off – Zelenskyy
Photo: President's office

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on 17 November that the level of air defence in Ukraine is sufficient to update the response to Russian MiG aircraft and Kinzhal missile carriers taking off, and there is no need to bring all activities throughout Ukraine to a halt.

Source: Zelenskyy’s address on 17 November

Quote: "Today, I issued a separate instruction to the Ministry of Defence and the General Staff regarding responses to Kinzhal missile carriers that disrupt our country for hours with air-raid threats.

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Our air defence capabilities and overall readiness for missile threats allow us to modernise our response somewhat – without unnecessary interruptions to the country. This is important for millions of our people. I expect corresponding proposals."

Details: Lately, air-raid warnings issued because of MiG-31K fighter jets taking off in Russia have become much longer. Ukraine’s Air Force attributes this to Russian pilots practising refuelling midair. This affects Ukrainians’ everyday lives, as most institutions and facilities stop working during air-raid warnings.

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Background:

  • The Air Force noted that only Ukraine’s senior leadership can make the decision on whether to give the all-clear during long Russian MiG-31K fighter jet flights. Meanwhile, the threat of Kinzhal missile attacks remains real.
  • Air Force spokesperson Yurii Ihnat explained that if there is a ballistic missile threat, an air-raid warning is issued in the oblasts that the missiles can reach. MiG-31Ks, and the Kinzhal air-to-surface missiles launched from them, can reach any part of Ukraine.
  • At a meeting of the Staff of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief on Friday, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy ordered a solution to be developed to prevent prolonged air-raid warnings caused by MiG fighter jet take-offs from paralysing the country.

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