Ukraine’s Defense Minister Rustem Umerov has canceled his visit to France over security concerns, where the launch of an artillery coalition to aid Ukraine was set to take place. This was confirmed by the French Ministry of Defense.
Umerov’s cancellation comes amidst hesitancy from the West over further support for Ukraine, with €50 billion stuck in limbo in the EU and $60 billion held up in the US.
During his visit, Umerov and French Defense Minister Sebastien Lecornu were to tour Nexter factories in Bourges, where CAESAR self-propelled howitzers are produced, as well as visit the MBDA missile shipyard in Selles-Saint-Denis. The Ukrainian Defense Minister will now participate remotely via video link.
The artillery coalition to aid Ukraine is led jointly by France and the US under the framework of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group, established at the Ramstein format. The coalition was set up to provide for Ukraine’s short-term and long-term defense needs.