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The US Patriot system will be deployed in the war within six months. It takes roughly a year to train troops to use the system, which can lock onto targets 50 miles away. Some of the compatible missiles can hit missiles up to 100 miles away.
But Ukrainian foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba says Washington has developed a “special plan” for the Patriot missile system to be deployed far quicker.
And Ukrainian troops could even be trained in the US, rather than in European countries such as Germany.
In a wide-ranging interview, Mr Kuleba says Kyiv is hoping to have a peace summit by February.
He said Russia must first be prosecuted for war crimes, adding that the United Nations could be the best “venue” for peace talks.
President Volodymyr Zelensky visited Washington in his first foreign trip since the war in Ukraine began.
And Mr Zelensky secured a new $1.8bn military aid package during the visit, which will include the missile battery.
Kuleba said that the move “opens the door for other countries to do the same.”
He said that the U.S. government developed a program for Ukrainian troops to complete training faster than usual “without any damage to the quality of the use of this weapon on the battlefield.”
Mr Kuleba did not commit to a specific time frame, but said iit will be “very much less than six months.” And he added that the training will be done “outside” Ukraine.
Kuleba said during the interview at the Foreign Ministry that Ukraine will do whatever it can to win the war in 2023.
“Every war ends in a diplomatic way,” he said. “Every war ends as a result of the actions taken on the battlefield and at the negotiating table.”
Kuleba said the Ukrainian government would like to have the “peace” summit by the end of February.
“The United Nations could be the best venue for holding this summit because this is not about making a favour to a certain country,” he said. “This is really about bringing everyone on board.”
About the U.N. Secretary-General’s role, Kuleba said: “He has proven himself to be an efficient mediator and an efficient negotiator, and most importantly, as a man of principle and integrity. So we would welcome his active participation.”
The foreign minister again downplayed comments by Russian authorities that they are ready for talks.
“They (Russians) regularly say that they are ready for negotiations, which is not true because everything they do on the battlefield proves the opposite,” he said.
Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed several days ago that his country is ready for talks to end the war in Ukraine, but suggested that the Ukrainians are the ones refusing to take that step.
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