Russian Assault War: More heavy weapons for Ukraine

Status: 15.06.2022 19:14

Several states have promised Ukraine additional supplies of heavy weapons. Germany is also involved and, according to Defense Minister Lambrecht, wants to supply three multiple rocket launchers.

At a meeting of the so-called Ukrainian contact group, the US expressed the prospect of further Western arms deliveries to the country. “We will increase our support for the Ukrainian armed forces,” US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin told a meeting of more than 45 countries at NATO Headquarters. In addition to the USA, Germany and the United Kingdom also want to supply more rocket launchers.

Ukraine is “facing a crucial moment on the battlefield,” Austin said, citing the fierce fighting in the Donbas. According to the consultant, President Volodymyr Zelensky has previously demanded, among other things, 500 tanks, 2,000 armored vehicles, 1,000 howitzers and 300 American Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS).

NATO has announced the delivery of heavy weapons to Ukraine

Mathea Schülke, WDR, daily news 17:00, June 15, 2022

Austin is seeking further assistance to Ukraine

Austin called on the Allies to provide further military support to Ukraine. According to him, Russia is trying to eliminate Ukrainian positions with long-range weapons and continues to bomb Ukrainian territory without distinction. Therefore, joint efforts for Ukraine’s self-defense need to be intensified. “We have to put even more pressure on ourselves,” Austin said. You can’t afford to lose pace.

According to the US Department of Defense, the United States wants to hand over four multiple rocket launchers to the government in Kiev, as well as another 1,000 Javelin anti-tank missiles and four Mi-17 helicopters.

Lambrecht wants to offer three Mars II rocket launchers

Germany also wants to offer three multiple Mars II rocket launchers. This was announced after the meeting by the Federal Minister of Defense Christine Lambrecht. According to a report by the Business Insider portal, Germany is expected to supply only three systems instead of four, partly due to a lack of ammunition.

German rocket launchers from the Bundeswehr should therefore be handed over to Ukraine in August or September. Before that, Ukrainian soldiers should be trained in the system, said Business Insider.

Ukraine could use Mars II to attack the Russian army’s artillery positions. Seven more self-propelled howitzers are to be delivered to Ukraine in June, and Cheetah anti-aircraft tanks will gradually follow from 30 July.

Britain promises delivery of rocket launchers

Britain says it will soon supply several rocket launchers to Ukraine. “I think the van is about to fall,” British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace said on the sidelines of a multinational joint expeditionary force (JEF) meeting in Oslo.

The United Kingdom announced the delivery of the MLRS multiple rocket launcher system in early June. According to experts, its range of up to 80 kilometers is slightly greater than that of comparable Russian systems. Ukrainian soldiers were able to hit enemy artillery without reaching range.

In addition to MLRS missile launchers, Britain is also considering the delivery of Harpoon anti-ship missiles, which Denmark and the Netherlands have also promised Ukraine, Wallace said. Norwegian Defense Minister Bjorn Arild Gram said after a meeting with Wallace that his country is also considering further arms sales to Ukraine.

NATO wants to give more support to Ukraine

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg reiterated the importance of additional arms supplies to Ukraine. “Ukraine is in a critical situation and there is an urgent need to do more,” he said. However, the delivery of comprehensive air defense systems will take some time due to the necessary training of Ukrainian forces.

In addition, the military alliance wants to give Ukraine more support for the transition from Soviet to Western weapons systems. Stoltenberg said he expected the Allies to agree on a comprehensive support package at the Madrid summit in late June. “We need to see that we are supplying more modern air defenses, more modern heavy weapons and, more generally, more Western-style weapons,” said the NATO chief.

Plans to expand NATO’s eastern wing are increasingly concrete

In addition, the eastern wing of the military alliance is to be strengthened again in view of the Russian attack on Ukraine. According to Stoltenberg, a decision should be taken at the Madrid summit to strengthen the existing multinational combat groups with additional combat units and to expand air, naval and cyber defense.

It is also planned to set up structures to strengthen the force on the ground even faster in the event of a specific threat. According to Stoltenberg, it is planned to increase the level of readiness of troops and the preparation of some armed forces specifically for the defense of individual countries.

combat-ready brigade of the Bundeswehr in Lithuania

In Lithuania, for example, the federal government wants to provide a combat brigade in addition to the already deployed combat units with about 500 soldiers. That could be up to 3,000 soldiers who can be quickly relocated to Lithuania in an emergency.

Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced last week that Germany would continue to expand its military presence in Lithuania.

With information from Helga Schmidt, ARD studio in Brussels

NATO Secretary General: More heavy weapons for Ukraine

Jakob Mayr, BR Brussels, 15 June 2022 19:39

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