Australia expands its military training support for Ukrainian armed forces recruits throughout 2024, increasing its budget for the operation to $126 million, the Australian Defense Ministry reported.
This announcement comes as the latest rotation of 70 Australian Defence Force (ADF) instructors returns from the UK-led Operation Interflex training program based there. The Operation Kudu program is the Australian Defence Force’s commitment to the training of Armed Forces of Ukraine recruits in the United Kingdom.
Since January, ADF members have assisted with training over 1,200 Ukrainian recruits under the UK-led multinational program.
Over the next 12 months, the number of deployed ADF members will increase to 90 personnel, per rotation, according to the Australian Minister of Defence.
Australia’s role will now incorporate “a junior leadership training program, focusing on areas such as foundation warfighting skills including urban and trench warfare, combat first aid, explosive hazard awareness and marksmanship.”
“This ongoing contribution is part of the Albanese Government’s steadfast support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity,” Minister for Defence Richard Marles said.
Overall, the training initiative has prepared over 30,000 newly enlisted Ukrainian soldiers for combat duties since being launched in June 2022.
Since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Australia has committed approximately $910 million in overall assistance to Ukraine including $730 million in military support, according to the Australian Defense Ministry.