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U.S. to unveil over $3 bln in Ukraine aid with new air defense missiles

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U.S. Bradley Fighting Vehicles that will be deployed in Latvia for NATO’s Operation Atlantic Resolve wait for an unload in Garkalne, Latvia February 8, 2017. REUTERS/Ints Kalnins

A new U.S. weapons aid package for Ukraine worth more than $3 billion is set to be announced later on Friday and will include Sea Sparrow missiles for air defense and Bradley Fighting Vehicles, according to a document seen by Reuters.

The Sea Sparrow missiles will help curb Russian missile strikes on Ukraine, which are intended to exhaust Kyiv’s air defenses and damage the country’s energy infrastructure.

The U.S. and Germany have also pledged to send Patriot missile systems to repel Russian missile and drone attacks.

The RIM-7 Sea Sparrow will be an additional anti-air defense system for Ukraine. It is currently in production by Raytheon Technologies Corp (RTX.N) and General Dynamics Corp (GD.N).

The armored Bradley Fighting Vehicle has a powerful gun and has been used regularly by the U.S. Army to carry troops around battlefields since the mid-1980s. The Army has thousands of Bradleys. The United States plans to send about 50.

Politico reported on Thursday that the Sea Sparrow System would be used on the Buk launcher, a Soviet-era weapon that Ukraine currently uses.

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