Italy’s Il Fatto Quotidiano newspaper, citing its own sources, reported Tuesday, June 18, that Rome intends to include Storm Shadow long-range air-to-ground cruise missiles along with the SAMP/Ts in what will be its ninth aid package for delivery by the end of the month.

Italy’s foreign minister said in a radio interview on June 3 that Italy was planning to send a second SAMP/T air defense system to Ukraine, in response to Kyiv’s further requests for greater help in the face of ever more Russian missile attacks.

Il Fatto Quotidiano, a newspaper associated with Italy’s 5-Star Movement, has been one of the country’s most vocal in calling for a halt to military aid to Kyiv.

Some news outlets suggest this would be the first time Italy has sent to Ukraine any of the 200 Storm Shadow missiles it has received since 1999, when it placed its first order with the missiles' manufacturer, MBDA.  


A statement in April by the UK’s Secretary of Defence, Grant Shapps, during a visit to the MBDA factory where parts of the missiles are made suggested that Italy had already sent some of the weapons to Ukraine.

“I do think the Storm Shadow has been an extraordinary weapon,” he said, according to The Times. “It’s the UK, France and Italy positioning those weapons for use, particularly in Crimea. These weapons are making a very significant difference.”

The Italian Ministry of Defense has not yet commented on the current claim nor did it respond to the April reports. Rome rarely speaks out on issues that it considers to be sensitive, preferring to keep a low profile.

The Anglo-French Storm Shadow / SCALP EG air-launched, long-range cruise missiles have had a huge impact on Ukraine’s ability to strike at Russian strategically important targets, particularly on the Crimean Peninsula.

The weapon weighs around 1,300 kilograms (2,900 pounds) and measures a little over 5 meters (16 feet) long. It is designed to target high-value, well-defended infrastructure such as airbases, radar installations, communications hubs, and other strategic assets. The missile is considered to be both highly accurate and difficult to intercept with a range exceeding 250 kilometers (150 miles).


It uses a tandem BROACH (Bomb Royal Ordnance Augmented Charge) warhead in which an initial shaped charge cuts a passage through armor, concrete, earth, and so on allowing the 450 kilogram (1,000 pounds) main charge to penetrate inside the target.

Both Britain and France recently agreed to allow Ukraine to use the weapon against military targets inside Russia. British Foreign Secretary David Cameron said, “Ukraine has the right to do this. Against the backdrop of Russia striking Ukraine, it is understandable why Ukraine feels the need to be confident that it can defend itself.”

French President Emmanuel Macron, in turn, said: “We believe that we must allow Ukraine to destroy military facilities on Russian territory, from where missiles are launched, and shelling is carried out on Ukrainian territory. But they should not have the right to strike other targets in Russia,” – effectively limiting their use to targets in Kursk, Rostov and Belgorod.


Variants of the missile have been sold to the United Kingdom, Italy, Greece, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates. France has also developed and deployed a sea-launched version for use on its naval ship and submarines.

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