Seven Patriots and U.S. decision on F-16s would be best result of NATO summit - Zelensky

Seven Patriots and U.S. decision on F-16s would be best result of NATO summit - Zelensky

Seven Patriot air defense systems and the U.S. decision to hand over its F-16 fighter jets will be the best result of the NATO summit in Washington.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said this in an interview for The New York Times, according to an Ukrinform correspondent.

"Can we eventually get seven Patriot systems from NATO countries? Seven. We would like to close the airspace over all our regions and have 20 to 30. Let's forget about that. Can we get seven? Do you think it is too much for the NATO anniversary summit in Washington? For a country that has been trying to become a NATO member since 2008? For a country that is fighting for freedom and democracy around the world today? Seven systems. This is just the practical result of the summit," Zelensky said.

Read also: NATO membership would guarantee peace for Ukraine, world: Rasmussen-Yermak Int’l Task Force

According to him, these "seven Patriots are needed to cover several cities in our countries, without which we will lose our economy and energy sector."

The president also noted that he would like Ukraine to receive an invitation to join NATO at the summit, "because this would be a very serious card in Ukraine's hands before the end of the war." However, in his opinion, the key members of the military alliance are not ready for this.

"But everyone says that this is escalation — again. I believe that the U.S. and Germany are not ready for this," Zelensky said.

On July 9-10, the 75th NATO summit will be held in Washington. The situation surrounding Russia's invasion of Ukraine is to be discussed at the summit.

According to U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs James O'Brien, the United States does not expect any decisions to be made at the NATO summit in terms of inviting Ukraine to join the military alliance, but there will be a substantial show of support for Kyiv.

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