More nations pledge weapons for Ukraine

by IANS |

Kiev, January 20 (IANS) More nations have pledged to provide additional weapons to Ukraine as the ongoing war staged By Russia will complete a year next month.

The announcements came at a meeting on Thursday during which the UK, Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, Denmark, Czech Republic, Estonia, the Netherlands and Slovakia promised more support, the BBC reported.

The meeting that took place at an army base in Estonia to discuss a range of new packages to help Ukraine recapture territory and fend off any further Russian advances, came ahead of a crunch meeting of the Ukraine Defence Group scheduled in Germany on Friday, in which 50 countries are set to co-ordinate arms supplies.

The packages announced in a joint statement include 600 Brimstone missiles (the UK); 19 French-made Caesar self-propelled howitzers (Denmark); howitzers, ammunition, support vehicles and anti-tank grenade launchers (Estonia); Stinger air-defence systems, two helicopters, and drones (Latvia); anti-aircraft guns and two helicopters (Lithuania); S-60 anti-aircraft guns with 70,000 pieces of ammunition (Poland); produce further large calibre ammunition, howitzers and APCs (the Czech Republic).

The Netherlands will announce its support package on Friday.

Speaking during his visit to Estonia, UK Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said: "In 2023, it is time to turn the momentum that the Ukrainians have achieved in pushing back Russia into gains and... push them back out of Ukraine and to restore Ukraine's sovereignty, which is their right under international law."

Meanwhile, the US also announced a fresh support package later on Thursday.

The Pentagon promised to provide Kiev an extra 59 Bradley armoured vehicles, 90 Stryker personnel carriers and Avenger air defence systems, among other large and small munitions, reports the BBC.

It said recent air attacks demonstrated "the devastating impact of Russia's brutal war in Ukraine", but said the newly-pledged arms would help to fend these off.

With this, the US has so far committed more than $26.7 billion in security assistance to Ukraine since Moscow's full-scale invasion on February 24, 2022.

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