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Netherlands contributes €250 million to Czech artillery initiative for Ukraine

The Netherlands is set to supply Ukraine combat and patrol boats, alongside a €250 million contribution to a Czech initiative for artillery shells.
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Prime Minister of the Netherlands Mark Rutte
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Prime Minister of the Netherlands Mark Rutte in Kharkiv on 1 March 2024. Credit: Presidential Office
Netherlands contributes €250 million to Czech artillery initiative for Ukraine

The Dutch Ministry of Defense has announced that the Netherlands will contribute €250 million to a Czech initiative aimed at ordering 800,000 artillery shells for Ukraine in the short term. Additionally, the Netherlands will supply Ukraine with fast and agile vessels, including rubber boats, patrol boats, and combat boats. In addition, the country

The Netherlands pledges €2 billion in military aid to Ukraine for 2024 as part of a new security agreement signed in Kharkiv on 1 March.

The EU has committed to significant ammunition donations, with a target of one million rounds by March 2024. However, progress has been slower than anticipated, with only 330,000 rounds donated so far.

The supply includes 14 rigid hull inflatable boats (RHIBs), eight militarized river patrol boats, and CB90 combat boats, a mix of vessels from the Dutch own resources and those sourced from the industry, the Dutch Ministry reported.

Since early December 2023, the Netherlands has delivered various types of ammunition, radar systems, individual weapons such as rifles and machine guns, field hospitals, tents and accessories, generators, and numerous medical supplies to Ukraine.

Speaking at the Munich Security Conference, Czech President Petr Pavel said his country had found about 800,000 artillery shells abroad that could be sent to Ukrainian troops within a few weeks. He said financial support is needed to deliver these munitions to Ukraine.

Ukraine’s commander of the Tavria operational and strategic grouping of troops, Oleksandr Tarnavsky, said in December 2023 that the Ukrainian Armed Forces faced a shortage of artillery shells and “curtailed some military operations due to a lack of foreign assistance.”

Recently, Defense Minister Rustem Umerov, in a letter to the heads of the military departments of the European Union, said that Ukraine is experiencing a “critical” shortage of artillery shells. He explained that the Ukrainian Armed Forces can fire no more than 2,000 shells a day on the 1,500-kilometer-long front line. This is three times fewer shells than Russia uses, he said.

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