Putin claims wrecking 5 Patriots, Zelenskyy denies: No Patriots destroyed in Ukraine

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President Volodymyr Zelenskyy denied that any Patriot systems were destroyed in Ukraine and stressed that they’re all intact and operational, after Russian President Vladimir Putin alleged that Russian forces destroyed five Patriot systems near Kyiv.

“No matter who in Russia says that our Patriots have been destroyed, they are still here, they are working, all of them are shooting down Russian missiles. As efficiently as possible. Not a single Patriot has been destroyed!” Zelenskyy said in his nightly address.

Putin had said on Friday: “We destroyed five Patriot systems outside Kyiv, so we would not have any problem wiping out any building or structure in downtown Kyiv… We have the opportunity… but don’t have the need to do so.” He added that Russia did not need to attack targets in central Kyiv because “the enemy on the front line is not successful.”

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On May 16, the Russian defense ministry said that it launched an attack which completely destroyed five US-made Patriot air defense systems in Kyiv. “Kinzhal hypersonic missile system hit and completely destroyed… five launchers of US-manufactured Patriot surface-to-air missile system in Kyiv,” state news agency TASS cited the ministry as saying.

Spokesperson of the Ukrainian Air Forces Command, Yurii Ihnat, denied that any Patriot systems were destroyed in Ukraine as the Russian attack using Kinzhal missiles was intercepted, and all missiles were shot down.

At the time, White House NSC Coordinator for Strategic Communications, John Kirby, said that the US could not confirm whether Patriot systems in Ukraine were damaged in a Russian attack.

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