Zelenskiy Says Ukraine's Air Defenses Beefed Up With More NASAMS

President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has announced the deployment of more Western-supplied NASAMS air-defense systems as Ukraine prepares for an expected increase in Russian air strikes targeting its energy infrastructure during the cold season.

"Additional NASAMS systems from partners were put on combat duty," Zelenskiy wrote on Telegram. "Timely reinforcement of our air defense before winter," he added, without specifying the number of extra NASAMS deployed.

Ukraine's energy infrastructure was regularly targeted last winter by Russian missile and drone strikes that caused victims and damage as well as misery to millions of people who were left in the dark and cold amid freezing temperatures.

U.S. officials last week said that Washington is expected to deliver $425 million in new military aid to Ukraine, including some $125 million earmarked for ammunition for High-Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) and NASAMS as well as other types of armaments.

NASAMS, or National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems, are a highly mobile networked short-to-medium range air-defense system developed jointly by the United States and Norway that were first delivered to Ukraine in November last year.

U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said at the time that NASAMS deployed in Ukraine had a 100 percent success rate intercepting Russian missiles.

Ukraine's air defenses, meanwhile, warned that more Russian strikes using ballistic missiles were likely on November 7.

"There is a threat of using ballistic missiles in areas where an air raid alarm has been declared. Do not ignore air raid alarms. Head to the nearest shelter," the military said in a statement in the early afternoon on November 7.

A senior Moscow-appointed official in the occupied eastern city of Donetsk said Ukrainian shelling killed six people and wounded nearly a dozen.

Denis Pushilin, the Kremlin-backed de facto head of the Donetsk region, said Ukrainian forces had fired long-range missiles provided last year by the United States, striking "civilian infrastructure" and official buildings.

"Six people were killed and 11 wounded. Medical assistance is being provided to all the injured," Pushilin said.

Donetsk's Kremlin-backed mayor said earlier that a building linked with the Labor and Social Protection service had been hit, leading to six deaths.

Russia's Defense Ministry said earlier that a Ukrainian drone attack on the Moscow-occupied Crimea region was repelled by Russian air defenses overnight.

"Nine drones were destroyed and eight others were intercepted off the Black Sea coast of Crimea," the ministry said in a statement, while Mikhail Razvozhayev, the Russian-installed governor of Sevastopol, said five drones were shot down over the region.

Sevastopol is home to Russia's Black Sea Fleet.

Razvozhayev later said that falling debris from the downed drones seriously injured a man in the village of Orlivka. In the village of Andriyivka, near Sevastopol, debris that fell on the roof of a private house caused a small fire, he said.

An RFE/RL correspondent on the ground reported that blasts resembling the work of air-defense systems could be heard in the morning in the center of Sevastopol.

The Russian claims could not be independently verified, and Ukraine has not commented on the alleged attack, which was reported a day after Kyiv claimed that its forces had inflicted “significant” damage to a Russian missile carrier in Crimea two days earlier.

Ukraine's military identified the vessel as the Askold and saying it might not be repairable.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said his military had hit the Askold in the Kerch shipyard in Crimea, which Russia seized and illegally annexed in 2014 but which Kyiv seeks to reclaim in battle.

The Russian military had previously reported a Ukrainian missile strike on a shipyard in Crimea and said it had damaged an unnamed Russian ship.

Britain's Defense Ministry said on November 7 that the "almost certain" Ukrainian strike on the Askold proved Kyiv's "capability to hit Crimean shipbuilding infrastructure" and "will likely cause Russia to consider relocating farther from the front line, delaying the delivery of new vessels."

On the battlefield, the Ukrainian military said 36 combat clashes took place during the day on November 7.

The focal point of the conflict remained the industrial city of Avdiyivka, in the Donetsk region, which Russian troops continue to attempt to surround.

Ukrainian forces repelled 13 attacks there, the General Staff of the Ukrainian military said in its evening summary.

It added that Russian forces conducted unsuccessful assault operations in the Maryinka area of the Donetsk region, where Ukrainian defense forces also repelled 13 attacks

Russian forces have been repeatedly trying to capture Adviyivka for the past several weeks in one of the bloodiest battles of the war.

Heavy fighting was also under way in the southern region of Zaporizhzhya, where Ukrainian troops have been mounting a months-long counteroffensive, the military said.

[please be sure to consider clicking the support button, to support this web project and related efforts]

Key Words: Ukraine, Air Defense Missiles, NASAMS, Russia, Military Aid

NASAMS Air Defense Being Fired From Battery, adapted from defense.gov image