No government holding back on sending defense systems to Ukraine. This was confirmed by Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani. But according to press sources, political tensions in the majority also delayed the decision. Facts, rumors and insights
Italy intends to supply Ukraine with the Samp-T missile defense system, but faces technical problems before it can be sent.
This was announced this morning by the Foreign Minister, Antonio Tajani, on ‘Radio Anch’io’ on Radio 1, clarifying the dossier of the advanced Italian-French Samp-T missile system in Kiev. In the coming weeks, the government will have to finalize the sixth aid package: on the table is the supply requested by Ukraine of the anti-aircraft shield. Republic wrote yesterday that a decision on the supply of new weapons to Ukraine it had been postponed to next month due to political tensionscost considerations and equipment shortages.
Today Tajani said Italy is working with the French to resolve the issues ahead of the Samp-T’s deployment.
Only two weeks ago the Meloni government he had guaranteed to Ukrainian President Zelensky to evaluate the possibility of transferring the air defense system to Ukraine. Just last month the Italian defense minister, Guido Crosetto, confirmed a Reuters that the Franco-Italian Samp-T air defense system was among the military aid Kiev requested from Rome. The current version of this system has state-of-the-art capabilities in countering airborne threats and short-range tactical ballistic missiles. But Italy has five working Samp-T air defense batteries and one training battery in service. Sending even one to Ukraine means depriving yourself of it for national defense. Without forgetting the cost issue: almost 700 million euros per battery.
All the details.
SUPPLY OF THE ITALIAN-FRENCH ANTI-AIRCRAFT SHIELD TO KIEV
On the supply of the so-called air defense shield to Ukraine “there are no brakes. We voted in Parliament to renew the authorization to send weapons to Ukraine, in a European and NATO context, after informing Parliament”. This was pointed out by the Foreign Minister, Antonio Tajani, on ‘Radio Anch’io’ on Radio 1.
THE SPECIFICATIONS OF MINISTER TAJANI
“It is an Italian-French project – he recalled – we are working intensely with the French, there are technical problems to be solved, technical as regards the military aspects, not technical bureaucratic ones”. The minister therefore assured: “We are proceeding, Minister Crosetto is working, there is no braking, things are being told that are not true, someone has been misinformed, we are working to give it but it takes time”. Tajani referred, in particular, to “technical problems in making the instruments work”, adding that “the general staffs are at work”. And he reiterated: “But of course Parliament will be informed before any shipment is sent”.
WHO BRAKES TO SEND
According to the newspaper directed by Maurizio Molinari, Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni was encountering resistance to the approval of a decree to send arms to Ukraine by her allies in the centre-right Lega and Forza Italia.
And on the sending of the anti-aircraft shield there are also other issues to be resolved.
EQUIPMENT PROBLEMS: DISCOVERED THE ITALIAN DEFENSE?
In reality, the concern to deprive the Italian army of Samp-Ts complicates the decision to send the anti-aircraft defense system, since two of its five missile batteries are already engaged in Kuwait and Slovakia, reports Republic.
Furthermore, “The main question concerns the procurement of some components of the Samp/T, which intercepts aircraft within a radius of 100 km and short-range missiles within 25 km. Of course, everything will have to be agreed with France, which should ensure the other parties” explained Stefania Craxi, Forza Italia, president of the Senate Foreign Affairs commission, to Republic.
Not only that, another critical point is the fear of depriving the Italian skies. “I confirm that it is an issue that is being discussed at the level of the government and the defense staff. It is clear that we cannot impoverish our protection system,” Senator Craxi said.
According to General Leonardo Tricarico, president of the ICSA Foundation and former Chief of Staff of the Air Force, “the systems we are talking about (the Samp/T) should go, because they are modern and effective, to significantly substantiate the sacrosanct right to defend the Ukraine compared to today’s more insidious threat of Russian drones and missiles”.
“The downside, however, — emphasizes the general about Formiche.net — risks becoming the recto of the same, i.e. the main problem, that of having to significantly impoverish the national air defense system, already now afflicted by many fragilities. Precisely for this reason “The decision to deprive oneself of systems that directly relate to national security is not to be taken lightly, especially without an open debate” concluded Tricarico.
THE ECONOMIC ISSUE
Finally, there would be the question of costs to be resolved for Rome. A complete Samp-T costs around 750 million euros. However, what the government should provide to the Ukrainians is worth about 250 million, he stresses Republic. It would in fact lack some components, and missiles, the latter insured by the French.
And the Northern League Borghi, a member of Copasir, expressed his views on this point from the majority parties: “When, in the recent past, I raised observations on the cost of some military supplies to Ukraine – he says – I was told that there was no the need to replace them. Now perhaps there is a non-secondary problem of expenditure”.
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