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EU countries forge plan to deliver 1M ammo rounds to Ukraine: Politico reveals details

EU countries forge plan to deliver 1M ammo rounds to Ukraine: Politico reveals details Illustrative image (Photo: facebook com ukroboronprom)
Author: Daria Shekina

The EU fears it may not have delivered a million artillery rounds to Ukraine in time. Hence, there's consideration of procuring them from countries outside the European Union, reports Politico.

The concerns are forcing France to change its former claims that ammunition should only be produced in Europe. A French diplomat believes that before resorting to foreign suppliers, the EU should not officially fail to meet the March target.

As long as we haven't come to that conclusion, we won't do it [buy abroad], but if we have to adjust, we'll adjust," said the diplomat anonymously.

Politico notes this as a significant departure from France's traditional stance, which encourages national governments to buy European weapons and ammunition.

Projectiles could be supplied to Ukraine after March 2024

Benedikta von Seherr-Thoß, the Managing Director for Peace, Security, and Defense of the European External Action Service, states that the March deadline is far off.

Even if the goal isn't met this month, she affirms that Kyiv will eventually receive the promised ammunition.

"The question is will we meet the target by March, or sometime later in 2024?" she said.

The EU is calling to purchase ammunition from other countries

The EU diplomat emphasizes that the priority is to provide Ukraine with enough ammunition to repel Russian attacks, not to protect European industry.

"The end game of this is to give Ukraine what they need. For Ukraine, it doesn't really matter [if weapons come from foreign suppliers] … So that could absolutely be a question for the future," the diplomat stated.

Previously, Latvian President Edgars Rinkēvičs also advocated that if the EU lacked ammunition or equipment, it should buy it elsewhere and provide it to Ukraine.

A million projectiles for Ukraine

At the end of last winter, it became known that the Ukrainian Armed Forces faced a shortage of artillery shells. Hence, in early May, the EU Council adopted a decision to assist Ukraine with a billion euros for joint procurement of ammunition and missiles. The plan was for European countries to provide Ukraine with a million projectiles.

Later, Bloomberg reported that the European Union was lagging behind its plan to supply Ukraine with a million artillery shells by March 2024. Currently, it's only 30% fulfilled.