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Bundeswehr General outlines priorities for training Ukrainian military in NATO countries

Bundeswehr General outlines priorities for training Ukrainian military in NATO countries Lieutenant General Andreas Marlow (Photo:
Author: Daria Shekina

Training of sergeants and officers is the most concerning issue for Ukraine. Therefore, in the EU's training areas, this instruction is a priority, according to a statement of Lieutenant General Andreas Marlow of the Bundeswehr, cited by Reuters.

Ukraine changed priorities during military training in the EU

"Eighteen months after Russia’s February 2022 invasion, Kyiv’s requests have changed from an initial need for training on defensive tactics and how to fight in urban areas, Lieutenant General Andreas Marlow told reporters on a visit to a training ground in Germany on Thursday," the statement reads.

The general specifies that the training of sergeants and officers is what currently concerns Ukrainians the most.

"The professional soldiers have been fighting this war for one and a half years now, and many have died or been wounded – so they need a fresh supply of military leaders," Marlow said.

Leopard 1 for the Ukrainian Armed Forces

In January, Western countries pledged to send Ukraine several dozen modern Leopard 2 tanks, which are in short supply in most armies.

Attempting to find heavier armor for Kyiv, they later turned to the older Leopard 1 tanks.

This tank has been in existence since the 1960s, but Ukraine will receive a more advanced version that was standard by the late 1980s.

Bundeswehr General sees advantages in supplying these tanks to Ukraine

Supplying tanks like these to Ukraine, as before, makes sense despite its age, Marlow says. He himself trained on the Leopard 1 in 1982 when he joined the Bundeswehr.

"You know that the Russians cannot use their latest models any longer, either, as they have higher losses than the Ukrainians," the general said.

He clarifies that the Leopard 1 has an advantage over Russian tanks like the T-72, T-64, and T-55, due to its night vision device, main gun stabilization, and mobility.

According to him, Ukrainian forces arrived in Germany with a diverse range of experience levels, from complete novices to experienced tankers who had already been on the front lines with their Soviet-era T-80 and T-64 models, particularly in Bahmut.

Training Ukrainian military in Europe

In November 2022, the European Union officially launched a training mission for Ukrainian fighters. At that time, it was planned that the EUMAM mission would train up to 15,000 military personnel.

In February, it was reported that the European Union would double the number of Ukrainian military personnel undergoing training. An additional 15,000 servicemen would be trained.

In July, it became known that the training of Ukrainian troops could gradually be shifted from Europe to Ukraine. This proposal was made by the EU's chief diplomat, Josep Borrell.