US weapons manufacturer Raytheon will produce the NASAMS systems by August 2024 under the contract

The Pentagon has signed a $182 million deal with US weapons manufacturer Raytheon to produce NASAMS (National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems) for the Ukrainian military.

Work on short- and medium-range air defense weaponry will take place at Raytheon’s facility in Tewksbury, Massachusetts, with an estimated completion date of August 23, 2024, the US Department of Defense said on Friday in a statement.

Earlier this week, US President Joe Biden announced another military aid package for Ukraine amid its conflict with Russia. At $2.98 billion, it is the largest to date and will include six NASAMS systems.

The military assistance will be financed as part of the so-called Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI), meaning the hardware will be produced specifically for Kyiv and not taken from US stocks.

In an article earlier this month, Air Force Magazine described NASAMS as a vital piece of technology that could help Ukrainian forces shoot down Russian cruise missiles, which have so far been hitting targets in the country “almost unhindered”.

Moscow has long criticized the arms supply to Kyiv by Washington and its allies, saying they only prolong the conflict and increase the risk of a direct confrontation between NATO and Russia.

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