EU scrambles to replenish arms stockpiles — RT World News
€500m plan will allow EU members to jointly buy weapons and save money
In what he called a « historic milestone » The European Commission on Tuesday approved a 500 million euro ($512 million) plan that would allow EU members to jointly procure weapons to meet the urgent need to replenish a deficit in defense products resulting from the conflict. in Ukraine.
The proposal is meant to incentivize at least three EU members to purchase weapons jointly, the body said in a statement. It also seeks to avoid competition among bloc members for the same products and to facilitate cost savings. The measure is expected to be financed with EU funds for the next two years.
“Today we are taking a historic step in European defense integration. As war rages on Europe’s borders, we are responding to the call of EU heads of state by presenting today a new instrument to support… the joint acquisition of arms. said Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for the Internal Market.
According to him, this decision will not only help to replenish depleted stocks due to supplies sent to Ukraine, but will also encourage member states to buy together. The proposal also aims to strengthen the capabilities of the European defense industrial complex by increasing its manufacturing capabilities.
The announcement comes a day after the EU agreed to allocate an additional €500 million in military aid to Ukraine. With the approval of the fifth assistance package, the bloc’s aid to Kyiv reached 2.5 billion euros ($2.5 billion).
After Russia launched its military operation in Ukraine, many Western countries – including the EU – pledged to support kyiv in any way possible, including military aid. Moscow, however, has consistently warned the West against supplying Ukraine with arms, arguing that they will only prolong the conflict and create long-term problems.
Russia sent troops to Ukraine on February 24, citing kyiv’s failure to implement the Minsk Accords, intended to give Donetsk and Luhansk regions special status within the Ukrainian state. The protocols, brokered by Germany and France, were first signed in 2014. Former Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko has since admitted that kyiv’s main goal was to use the ceasefire to save time and « to create powerful armed forces. »
In February 2022, the Kremlin recognized the Donbas republics as independent states and demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join any Western military bloc. kyiv insists the Russian offensive was unprovoked.
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