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18 Jun, 2023 21:33

EU promises to speed up weapons deliveries to Ukraine

The bloc expects the conflict to last “several months” more or even longer, its industry chief says
EU promises to speed up weapons deliveries to Ukraine

The European Union will speed up deliveries of weaponry and ammunition to Ukraine amid the ongoing conflict with Russia, EU Internal Markets Commissioner Thierry Breton has said.

Speaking to French daily Le Parisien on Saturday, the EU industry boss said the bloc must ramp up its production to live up to its pledge to supply a million high-caliber munitions over the next 12 months.

“We are going to step up our efforts to deliver arms and ammunition – this is a war of high intensity in which they play a crucial role,” Breton stated.

Asked whether future military aid to Ukraine depends on the success of the ongoing counteroffensive effort against Russia, the official insisted EU support is not conditional and will be provided to prop up Kiev for as long as necessary.

“Our support is not conditional. What is imperative is for Ukraine to recover its freedom and its territory. We are determined to provide it with all the support it needs,” he stressed.

Ukraine launched its long-heralded counteroffensive against Russia early this month, with fighting greatly intensifying along the frontlines. Thus far, however, Kiev has failed to achieve any meaningful results with its attack, suffering heavy losses in the process.

According to the Russian military, Ukrainian forces have lost over 7,500 soldiers, killed or injured amid the counteroffensive push.

The country’s forces also suffered heavy losses of Western-supplied equipment, with multiple German-made Leopard 2 tanks and US-made Bradley infantry fighting vehicles destroyed in recent weeks. According to the latest figures voiced by Russian President Vladimir Putin, Ukraine lost nearly 200 tanks and more than 400 other armored vehicles during the counteroffensive.