British Prime Minister Sunak makes a surprise trip to Kyiv and increases defense aid

Kyiv, Ukraine (AP) – British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak pledged 125 anti-aircraft guns and other air defense technology when he paid his first unannounced visit to the snow-covered Ukrainian capital for talks with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Saturday.

The air defense package, which Britain has valued at £50 million ($60 million), comes as Russia has been bombing Ukraine’s power grid and other vital infrastructure from the air, causing widespread cold-weather blackouts for millions of Ukrainians.

The package includes radar and other technology to counter the Iran-supplied exploding drones that Russia has deployed against Ukrainian targets. It comes on top of a delivery of more than 1,000 anti-aircraft missiles announced by Britain earlier this month.

Britain is one of the staunchest Western supporters of Ukraine’s resistance to the Russian invasion. Alongside Zelenskyy, Sunak noted that Britain had provided £2.3 billion ($2.7 billion) in military aid and vowed: “We will do the same again next year.”