The British government is considering supplying Starstreak high-speed anti-aircraft missiles at Ukraine’s request, considering it a defensive weapon, Defense Minister Ben Wallace said Wednesday in an appearance in the House of Commons.
Wallace explained that this type of man-portable missile, designed to provide close air defense against conventional air threats, such as fixed-wing fighters. According to the manufacturers, it would enable the Ukrainian Army to better protect its skies.
The minister advanced that the UK will also increase the delivery of rations, medical equipment, and other non-lethal military aid in the face of the intensifying Russian offensive.
Wallace told MPs that so far his ministry has sent Ukraine 3,615 NLAW anti-tank missiles as well as smaller weapons and ammunition, and is preparing to send Javelin anti-tank missiles as well.
The Conservative minister, who stressed that the only weaponry the UK can offer to avoid escalating the war is defensive, estimated that at least a thousand Ukrainian civilians have been killed since the start of the invasion fourteen days ago.
The former military officer explained that at the beginning of the conflict Russia had between 110 and 120 battalion tactical groups compared to about 65 in Ukraine and more missile and aircraft reserves.
Information received from the Ukrainian Army, which London has not been able to independently verify, is that Russian casualties include 285 tanks, 985 armored fighting vehicles, 109 artillery systems, 50 multiple launch rocket systems, 44 aircraft, 48 helicopters, and 11,000 soldiers killed.