In a hugely provocative announcement, Slovakia on Friday has said the NATO country has donated its S-300 air defense system to Ukraine to “help it defend against Russia’s aggression,” according to a statement from Prime Minister Eduard Heger.

The official Slovakia in NATO Twitter account also confirmed that it is “stepping up its support to Ukraine” by sending the “S-300 air defense system to Ukraine, so it can defend itself against ongoing Russian aggression.

Slovakia’s defense ministry even published video of what appears to be a mobile S-300 unit being readied and pulling out of a military base. So far it appears a single unit will be given to Ukrainian forces.

Prime Minister Eduard Heger had said his country “donated” its Soviet-era defense system to Ukraine. The announcement came as he visited the Ukrainian capital with top EU officials, just before a meeting with President Zelensky.

And so it appears NATO is inching little by little toward a potential ‘no fly zone’ over Ukraine, given the S-300 is precisely the type of major equipment that would be needed. Russia’s reaction will without doubt be fierce, given this initial somewhat symbolic first step toward that possible end.

The Associated Press is noting this comes in direct response to Zelensky urging the west to “close the skies” for Russian aircraft over Ukraine

Zelenskyy mentioned S-300s by name when he spoke to U.S. lawmakers by video last month, appealing for defense systems that would allow Ukraine to “close the skies” to Russian warplanes and missiles.

The action also comes after foreign ministers of NATO met in Brussels Thursday where they reportedly agreed to give Ukraine “new and heavier weapons” – though without defining which precise weapons systems under consideration.

Russia has vowed that it’s ready to attack as “legitimate targets” any external weapons shipments intercepted from outside powers. S-300 transfers certainly bring NATO and Russia on a more direct collision course, and it’s unclear the degree to which other NATO allies signed off on this provocative delivery.

Republished from with permission

Sign up on or to check out our store on