Britain sends Apache helicopters armed with lethal Hellfire missiles to Ukraine
- Britain will send attack helicopters armed with lethal Hellfire missiles to Ukraine.
- The Apache helicopters will support the country’s desperate fight against Russian invaders, now in its 11th month.
- The new support package, which will also include tanks, was confirmed yesterday by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.
Britain will send attack helicopters armed with lethal Hellfire missiles to Ukraine in a move hailed as a “game changer.” The Apache helicopters will support the country’s desperate fight against Russian invaders, now in its 11th month.
The new support package, which will include tanks, was confirmed yesterday by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak. A senior defense source told the Sunday People that up to four Apaches will be sent, to be followed by 10 Challenger 2 main battle tanks. The Mirror reports that Ukrainian President Volodimir Zelenski has been begging the West for months to supply tanks and aircraft.
The insider said, “The Apache will be a game changer.” The tanks will arrive first, and it will be some time before the helicopters can be deployed. Other NATO members will now follow suit. Russia has thousands of tanks, so it will take more than four Apaches to have a strategic impact. But tactically, it is an important step. “We are sending the Apache AH64 E, the most modern version, which can take down multiple targets in seconds.”
Each Apache can be armed with up to 16 Hellfire anti-tank missiles, 76 Hydra 70 mm missiles, and a 30 mm chain gun. This means that four Apaches could wipe out an entire regiment of 70 tanks in a matter of moments. Powered by a Rolls-Royce engine, they have a top speed of 186 mph and can detect more than 250 potential targets at the same time, up to a range of 10 miles.
Each aircraft costs about £70 million and requires two pilots and a team of technicians to keep it running. The Apaches sent to Ukraine will be similar to those flown by Prince Harry in Afghanistan. The Army Air Corps is being refitted with 64 Es and should have 50 by next year.
It is understood Ukrainian pilots will be trained in the UK, and a maintenance base will be set up in a neighboring country such as Poland. Challenger 2 is one of the world’s best tanks and was used in the Iraq War. It can destroy any Russian tank, and its secret Chobham armor is designed to withstand most anti-tank weapons. A government spokesman said, “We are accelerating our support for Ukraine with the kind of cutting-edge military technology that will win this war.”