Estonia, UK, nine other countries meet, pledge more military aid to Ukraine

Representatives of 11 countries met at Tapa Army Base on Thursday to pledge further military aid to Ukraine. January 19, 2023.
Representatives of 11 countries met at Tapa Army Base on Thursday to pledge further military aid to Ukraine. January 19, 2023. Source: MoD Estonia/Twitter

At an international meeting convened by Estonia and the U.K. and held at Tapa Army Base on Thursday, participating states presented their latest military aid packages to Ukraine, which include significant amounts of heavy weapons, the Ministry of Defense said Thursday.

Estonia's latest military aid package to Ukraine will focus on indirect fire and anti-tank weaponry, the ministry said in a press release.

The latest package is also Estonia's biggest to date; it includes dozens of 155 mm FH-70 and 122 mm D-30 howitzers, thousands of units of artillery ammunition, support vehicles for the artillery units as well as hundreds of Carl-Gustaf M2 recoilless rifles (i.e. grenade launchers) together with ammunition.

The replacement value of the entire package is approximately €113 million, bringing Estonia's total military assistance to Ukraine to €370 million, or just over 1 percent of Estonia's GDP.

"Ukraine needs heavy weapons the most in order to maintain initiative and stand against Russia, who is at the moment preparing to restore its military force," said Minister of Defense Hanno Pevkur (Reform).

"In challenging times, we need allies who are ready to take up a leadership role," Pevkur continued. "Estonia, with our close ally the United Kingdom, is one of the countries that can be counted on. I am glad that we have also managed to include other allies to bring about changes on the battlefield."

While in Tapa, British Secretary of State for Defense Ben Wallace presented the U.K.'s next military aid package to Ukraine as well, which will include Challenger 2 tanks, AS-90 artillery and armored vehicles.

Also present at the meeting were Polish Minister of National Defense Mariusz Blaszczak, Latvian Minister of Defense Inara Murniece and Lithuanian Minister of National Defense Arvydas Anusauskas and representatives of the Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Slovakia and Spain.

Tallinn Pledge promises support to ensure military victory

The 11 participating countries' representatives also issued the Tallinn Pledge, a joint declaration on Thursday, which includes details about several participating countries' military aid to Ukraine as well.

"We recognize that equipping Ukraine to push Russia out of its territory is as important as equipping them to defend what they already have," the text of the declaration reads. "Together we will continue supporting Ukraine to move from resisting to expelling Russian forces from Ukrainian soil."

This assistance to Ukraine "comes from our own national stocks and resources, illustrating the mutual understanding of the severity of the situation and our commitment to urgently increasing and accelerating support for Ukraine," the signees underscored.

The 11 participants will be heading to the Ukraine Defense Contact Group meeting at Ramstein Air Base in Germany on Friday, where they will urge other allies and partners to follow suit as soon as possible to ensure a Ukrainian battlefield victory this year, they pledged.

Click here (link to PDF) to read the Tallinn Pledge in full.

While in Tapa, the delegations also met with Estonian and allied NATO forces stationed there.

€156 million in reimbursements already decided

Previous aid packages from Estonia to Ukraine have included Javelin anti-tank missiles, howitzers, anti-tank mines, anti-tank grenade launchers, mortars, vehicles, communications equipment, medical supplies, personal protective equipment such as helmets as well as dry food packages.

In cooperation with Germany, Estonia has also donated two field hospitals and medical supplies worth nearly €15 million. A third field hospital will be donated by Estonia to Ukraine in cooperation with the Netherlands and Norway, who supported the project with €7.8 million.

It will also continue to provide Ukrainian forces with basic as well as special training.

Estonia is applying for funds from the European Peace Facility (EPF) for the replacement of its own military equipment and stocks.

To date, €156 million in reimbursements have been decided for Estonia.


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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