Slovakia starts deploying Patriot air defence system
The Patriot air defense system from NATO member countries has begun arriving in Slovakia. The deployment will continue over the next few days, Slovakia’s defence Minister said Sunday.
The system will be operated jointly by German and Dutch troops. It will initially be stationed at the Sliac Airport in central Slovakia, to support NATO’s eastern flank defense.
The alliance has strengthened its defenses after Russia’s invasion in Ukraine.
The Patriot system will become part of a NATO battlegroup in Slovakia which is adjacent to Ukraine.
Jaroslav Nad, Defence Minister, posted on Facebook: “I am happy confirm that the first units responsible for deploying the Patriot aerial defence system are gradually arriving in Slovakia,” he said.
Nad stated that the Patriot system would be an addition to the Soviet-era S-300 system, which Slovakia uses.
Nad stated that while the system will initially be deployed at the Sliac Air Force Base, additional deployment areas are being consulted so that the security umbrella covers as much of Slovak territory as possible.
Last week, the minister stated that Slovakia was willing to donate the S-300 to Ukraine if it receives a replacement.
He stated that Slovakia was seeking a replacement for S-300 because of its dependence on Russia’s capabilities, age and dependence.
Russia warned Ukraine against any shipment of advanced air defenses and warned that it could target Western arms supplies.