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Estonia, allies strengthen cyber assistance to Ukraine

Cyber command.
Cyber command. Source: Kpr Marcus Liinamäe/ EDF

Estonia and its allies launched the "Tallinn Mechanism" on Wednesday to strengthen cyber support given by donor countries to Ukraine in the civilian domain.

The mechanism matches Ukraine's needs to donor states and was established earlier this year. It will help provide the country with a "coherent" strategy for defending itself in the cybersphere, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) said.

Estonia, Netherlands, Canada, Poland, France, Sweden, Germany, Denmark, the United States and the United Kingdom are donors, while the EU and NATO have joined as observer members.

The mechanism has an Estonian front office in Kyiv, a Polish back office in Warsaw, and a coordination group that unites representatives of Ukraine and all donors, the MFA said.

"Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine is not waged solely on the conventional battlefield," Minister of Foreign Affairs Margus Tsahkna (Eesti 200) said. "Russia's targets include Ukraine's cyber capabilities, both military and civilian, and therefore, it is crucial to support Ukraine's cyber defense and its capacity to restore and develop relevant infrastructure."

Margus Tsahkna Source: ERR

The group includes tech companies and NGOs from donor countries.

Estonia is allocating €500,000 to the Tallinn Mechanism through its 2024 development cooperation budget. The group is open to new members.

"Unfortunately, it is likely that Russia's cyberattacks will continue for the foreseeable future," Tsahkna said. "This is why with the Mechanism we are offering a chance to reinforce Ukraine's systematic preparedness and resilience to cyberattacks in the long term."

The Tallinn Mechanism works in parallel with the IT Coalition that addresses Ukraine's cyber issues in the military domain. 

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Editor: Helen Wright

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