The Estonian government cabinet has supported the proposal by Minister of Defense Hanno Pevkur (Reform) to provide long-term military aid to Ukraine as well as an extensive military aid package to support its defense against Russian aggression. The military aid includes Javelin anti-tank missiles, vessels, and other much-needed equipment.
"Just like the Estonian Javelins playing a decisive role last year in the defense of Kyiv and inspired other countries to lend a helping hand to Ukraine, our aim with this extensive aid package is to show that Ukraine's fight for freedom can only succeed if the Allies continue helping Ukrainians," said Pevkur.
In addition to a large number of Javelin anti-tank mines, the newest aid package also includes machine guns, ammunition for light weaponry, various vehicles and vessels, as well as diving equipment. Due to security reasons, the exact amounts being provided are not being revealed to the general public. However, the replacement value of the package is in the region of €80 million.
"This aid package has been compiled with the aim of maximum benefit for Ukraine without harming Estonia's own defense capability. We are replacing the necessary stocks," explained Pevkur.
"The Russian regime is betting on the free world giving up their support for Ukraine. In order to break the flawed calculations of the criminal Russian regime, we must send out a strategic message: we will continue with significant and sustained support for Ukraine until Ukraine has won the war. What is at stake is not only the security of Ukraine, but also Estonian, transatlantic, and global security as a whole," said Pevkur.
Analysts at the Estonian Ministry of Defense have also compiled a discussion paper outlining ways to set up transatlantic defense for success. The paper includes calculations showing that to ensure a Ukrainian victory and Russian defeat in the war, it will be enough for supporting countries to allocate 0.25 percent of their annual GDP to Ukraine.
"The Allies have what it takes – Russia is spending more than twice as much on fighting the war in Ukraine than the Ramstein coalition, whose combined economies are 30 times that of Russia, is on military aid for Ukraine. Our calculations show that if the free world would be willing to support Ukraine at a rate of 0.25 percent of their GDPs per year, it would be enough to break the backbone of Russia, which only understands brute force. This is a small price to pay compared to what the costs will be if Russia's aggression ends up paying off for them," said Pevkur.
Over the next four years, Estonia is prepared to allocate 0.25 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) to military aid for Ukraine and will use funds from its defense budget to finance that aid.
"Ukraine is also fighting for us and each war machine destroyed with our help is a step towards reducing the Russian threat to Europe. Therefore, we must be ready to support Ukraine in the long term and also demonstrate to our Allies that where there is a will, there is a way to help Ukraine," said Pevkur.
The addition of the latest military aid package means that since 2022, Estonia has provided Ukraine with military aid in the value of €500 million, which amounts to around 1.4 percent of GDP.
Previous aid packages sent from Estonia to Ukraine have included, Javelin anti-tank missile systems, howitzers, artillery ammunition, anti-tank mines, anti-tank mortars, machine guns, vehicles, communications equipment, field hospitals, medical supplies, personal protective gear (helmets, body armor), and military food rations.
Editor: Michael Cole