Britain to send anti-ship missiles to Ukraine to prevent blockade of Black Sea

Image: The Brimstone Missile fitted to a Tornado GR4. Credit: Sergeant Laura Bibby. Open Government License version 1.0

Britain will send hundreds of anti-ship supersonic Brimstone missiles to Ukraine to bolster the country´s naval defences.

Britain will send the missiles to help Ukraine defend against Russia’s naval operations in the Black Sea, Ben Wallace, the Defence Secretary, said on Thursday, April 28.

Brimstone missiles have been in service with the RAF since 2005 and were used extensively in Afghanistan.

The Brimstone can be launched from ground or air; it is reported that Britain will offer the surface-based systems, which can be modified to target ships.

The latest intelligence assessment from the Ministry of Defence (MoD) said there were 20 Russian navy vessels in the Black Sea, including submarines.

British defence officials warned Moscow’s naval forces retained the ability to strike the Ukrainian coast despite the spectacular loss of the Moskva, the flagship of Russia’s Black Sea fleet, and the landing ship Saratov.

Ben Wallace told Sky News: “We have said we will source and supply, if we can, anti-ship missiles.

“It’s incredibly important that grain that affects us all [through] food prices, does get out of Ukraine.”

On March 13 the MoD said Russia had established a “distant blockade” of Ukraine’s Black Sea coast – in effect isolating the country from international maritime trade.

The Brimstone missiles could help weaken the blockade if within range of Moscow’s fleet.

However, The Telegraph reported, it is more likely that they would be deployed to prevent any Russian amphibious assault of the major port city of Odesa.


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Written by

Fergal MacErlean

Originally from Dublin, Fergal is based on the eastern Costa del Sol and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]

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