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EU approves €450M for weapons to Ukraine
weapons for Ukraine

EU approves €450M for weapons to Ukraine

2 min. 28.02.2022 From our online archive
EU never before sent arms supplies to a country at war
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrel on Sunday discussed further measures to respond to the Russian invasion of Ukraine
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrel on Sunday discussed further measures to respond to the Russian invasion of Ukraine
Photo credit: AFP

European Union foreign ministers agreed to send €450 million ($500 million) in military aid to Ukraine for lethal weapons, according to Josep Borrell, the bloc’s foreign policy chief.

The aid will be financed by the EU’s European Peace Facility and will see the bloc supply arms to a country at war for the first time in its history. Another €50 million will be provided for non-lethal purposes, Borrell said at a press conference in Brussels Sunday. 

"For the first time, the EU will finance the purchase and delivery of arms and other equipment to enable a country victim of military aggression to defend itself," Luxembourg's Foreign Ministry said in a statement late on Sunday.

The EU’s military aid package may include supplying fighter jets for the Ukrainian air force, Borrell said. He said the EU has already had discussions with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba about the type of jets the Ukrainian military needs and there are member states that are able to supply them. 

Member states that don’t want to be associated with contributing lethal weapons will be able to abstain or make a parallel contribution of non-lethal aid.

A demonstrator holds a sign depicting Russian President Vladimir Putin during a protest against Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in Madrid on Sunday.
A demonstrator holds a sign depicting Russian President Vladimir Putin during a protest against Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in Madrid on Sunday.
AFP

Officials from Kyiv plan to meet Russian counterparts, hours after President Vladimir Putin put his country’s nuclear forces on higher alert. Belarus was preparing to send troops into Ukraine as soon as Monday to help its ally Moscow, the Washington Post reported, citing an unnamed U.S. official. 

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy voiced skepticism that talks planned with Russia on Monday for near the Belarus border would yield results, but he said he was willing to try if it meant any chance of peace. 

The U.S. and its European allies stepped up their economic response to the escalating conflict by announcing plans to sanction the central bank in Moscow and cut off various Russian lenders from the critical SWIFT financial messaging system. The offshore Russian ruble fell nearly 30% against the dollar.

U.S. and European stock index futures tumbled in early trading in Asia Monday, following a weekend of mounting sanctions by Western governments in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“A lot has changed since the Friday close,” said Neil Wilson, chief market analyst at Markets.com, pointing especially to the decision on SWIFT. 

The geopolitical conflict is also deepening concerns over inflation and its potential impact on the global economic recovery. Oil surged again as increased sanctions on Russia spurred worries of an energy crisis. Wheat and corn prices also soared.

U.S. citizens were advised to consider leaving Russia immediately. U.S. President Joe Biden planned to speak with allies on the crisis Monday morning in Washington.

©2022 Bloomberg L.P.


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