Home Europe Norway sending Hellfire missiles, night vision googles to Ukraine

Norway sending Hellfire missiles, night vision googles to Ukraine

Hellfire missile in Norway
Norwegian defense ministry file photo

The Norwegian defense ministry said it would donate Hellfire missiles and night vision systems to Ukraine, to aid the country in its defense against the Russian invasion.

The donation includes approximately 160 missiles, launching pads and guidance units. Both the missiles and the night-vision equipment will be drawn from armed forces inventories, the ministry said.

The donation was announced by Norwegian defense minister Bjørn Arild Gram when he met defense ministers from around 40 countries in Germany on September 8.

Western countries are in Ramstein to coordinate further donations and military support to Ukraine, to secure that the country can withstand the Russian invasion.

The missiles Norway is sending to Ukraine were originally acquired for the Coastal Ranger Commando.

“This is a weapon that Ukraine has asked for, and it will prove useful in their fight against Russian invasion forces. The missile is easy to operate, and can be used against both land- and sea-targets,” Bjørn Arild Gram said.

These are not the first weapon systems Norway is donating to Ukraine, The Scandinavian country previously sent Mistral surface to air systems, as well as M109 howitzers to Ukraine.

According to the defense ministry, the Norwegian armed forces tested and verified the status of the missiles prior to their shipment. They have now been shipped from Norway. Furthermore, Ukrainian operators have been trained in the use of Hellfire by Norwegian instructors.

The Hellfire missiles that Norway donated to Ukraine were nearing the end of their service life and were scheduled to be phased out in the coming years.

The night-vision equipment that Norway donated includes both night vision goggles and binoculars. This too is equipment that has been replaced by newer equipment in the Norwegian Armed Forces.

In the future, donations will to a lesser extent come from the armed forces’ own inventory.

“So far, we and our allies have donated military systems and equipment from our own stocks. In the future we will need to cooperate closely with the defense industry in order to maintain necessary deliveries of military equipment to Ukraine. This will also ensure that Ukraine receives more modern and efficient equipment,” Bjørn Arild Gram added.

Norway’s publicly-announced contributions for Ukraine also include M72 anti-tank weapons, bulletproof vests, helmets and other equipment.

Norway is also contributing to a fund led by the United Kingdom to coordinate acquisition of military equipment for Ukraine.