No nation has so far announced the sending of troops to help the Ukrainian army, but several countries have made material resources available to Kiev.
« The Anti-War Coalition Works! » In a message posted on Twitter on Saturday morning, February 26, as the fighting reached Kiev , Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky welcomed a telephone exchange with Emmanuel Macron. « Weapons and equipment sent by our partners are on their way to Ukraine » , still satisfied the head of state. If no nation has so far announced the sending of troops to help Ukraine against the Russian army, three days after the start of the invasion, several countries have made material resources available to Kiev.
The United States offers 350 million dollars of defensive equipment
The United States announced on Saturday the sending of new military aid to Ukraine in the amount of 350 million dollars (about 310.5 million euros). « This aid will include new defensive military assets that will enable Ukraine to combat the armored, airborne and other threats it faces today » , detailed the head of American diplomacy, Antony Blinken.
« This is another clear signal that the United States stands with the people of Ukraine as they defend their sovereign, courageous, and proud nation, » the secretary of state added. Antony Blinken recalled that the United States had released 60 million dollars (53.2 million euros) in military assistance to Ukraine in the fall, then 200 million (177.4 million euros) in more in December, « as the [Russian] threat materialized » .
With the 350 million announced on Saturday, « this brings to more than a billion dollars the total security assistance that the United States has granted to Ukraine during the past year » .
Germany delivers anti-tank rocket launchers
Germany had so far promised « 5,000 helmets » to the Ukrainian military, according to Der Spiegel . The German government announced on Saturday that it had authorized the delivery to Kiev of 1,000 anti-tank rocket launchers, 500 Stinger surface-to-air missiles and « several » howitzers, the government said.
This decision marks a political break. In Kiev, which criticized it for not delivering arms, Germany argued that it had been its line since the post-war period: not to send lethal equipment to conflict zones. This position was however less and less tenable since the outbreak of the invasion of the country by the Russian army. « Russian aggression against Ukraine marks a change of era, it threatens the order established since the post-war period, » Chancellor Olaf Scholz said in a statement. « In this situation it is our duty to help Ukraine as much as we can to defend itself against the invading army of Vladimir Putin » .
Concretely, these deliveries of rocket launchers will be made by the Netherlands, and the howitzers by Estonia. These two countries had originally acquired this equipment from Germany and needed a green light from Berlin to be able to re-export it to Kiev.
Der Spiegel adds that « the shipment of 14 armored vehicles was approved on Saturday » , citing the Ministry of Economy. These vehicles can be used for the protection of personalities or for evacuations.
Czech Republic sends thousands of weapons
The Czech Republic has for its part announced that it will donate machine guns, automatic and precision rifles, pistols and ammunition to Ukraine, for a value of 7.6 million euros. « The government on Saturday approved additional aid to Ukraine which is facing a Russian attack , » Defense Minister Jana Cernochova said in a tweet on Saturday. « The Ministry of Defense will also take care of transportation to a place determined by the Ukrainian side. Our help is not over , » she added.
The minister then told reporters that these weapons would include 30,000 pistols, 7,000 assault rifles, 3,000 machine guns and several dozen sniper rifles as well as a million cartridges. This donation will be sent to Ukraine « within the next few hours » , she added. At the end of January, Prague had already approved a donation to Kiev of four thousand artillery shells worth 1.5 million euros which have yet to be delivered.
The Netherlands provides missiles and sniper rifles
« The Netherlands has very recently received additional requests for military equipment from Ukraine , » the Dutch Ministry of Defense confirmed in a letter to the Dutch parliament on Saturday. The country « will supply 200 Stinger anti-aircraft missiles to Ukraine as soon as possible » . “The planned delivery of military goods was and is intended for Ukrainian self-defense against armed attack from Russia ,” the letter said.
« The Ministry of Defense shipped some of the already promised goods on Saturday , » including sniper rifles and helmets, the ministry said, adding that « other goods will be shipped as soon as possible, but the Netherlands, as other countries, face logistical challenges » .
Italy helps with mine clearance
Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi spoke to Volodymyr Zelensky on Saturday. « Our priority today must be to strengthen the security of our continent and to exert the greatest pressure on Russia to withdraw its troops and return to the negotiating table » , detailed the Italian government in a press release. released following a telephone conversation between the two leaders.
He also announced aid of 110 million euros to Ukraine « for humanitarian purposes and macro-financial stabilization » , as well as aid in military equipment « in particular in the sector of mine clearance and the supply of ‘protective equipment’ .
Belgium donates fuel and weapons
The Belgian Prime Minister for his part announced that his country would supply fuel and 2,000 machine guns to Kiev. « A more in-depth analysis of the requests continues » , added Alexander De Croo.
France strengthens its involvement on NATO’s eastern front
If the message published Saturday morning by President Volodymyr Zelensky on Twitter suggests that Emmanuel Macron raised the subject of material aid from France to Ukraine, Paris has not yet officially communicated to this topic.
In a text broadcast Friday evening, the President of the Republic however announced » military reinforcements » of France within NATO. France has thus chosen to « accelerate and reinforce the already planned deployment of fighter planes in the Baltic States » . To these ends, « from mid-March, 4 Mirage 2000-5 supported by a hundred airmen will be deployed in Estonia. »
Emmanuel Macron also announced « punctually reinforcing the French system in Estonia » with a sub-group of around 200 soldiers who will be deployed « alongside our Danish and British allies. » It was also decided to accelerate the « deployment of capabilities in Romania within the framework of NATO » , with the presence of a combined arms tactical group of around 500 soldiers. « These military devices are not intended for any escalation, but simply to participate in the defense of the member countries of NATO » , justified in a second time the Ministry of the Armed Forces.
Source : franceinfo