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Czech FM: Ukrainians are fighting for all of Europe

by Abbey Fenbert April 5, 2024 12:46 AM 2 min read
Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba (L) speaks with Czech Foreign Minister Jan Lipavsky (R), as they take part in a meeting of the NATO-Ukraine Council in Brussels on April 4, 2024. (Johanna Geron / Pool / AFP via Getty Images)
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Ukrainian troops are fighting for the security of all European countries, Czech Foreign Minister Jan Lipavsky said at the NATO-Ukraine Council meeting in Brussels on April 4.

Lipavsky's remarks were part of an appeal to Western allies to join the Czech-led initiative to purchase up to 1.5 million artillery shells for Ukraine as front-line units face increasingly dire ammunition shortages.  

"(Ukrainians) really depend on our help and we in turn depend on the fact that the Ukrainians are also fighting for the security of the whole of Europe, so we are in this together," Lipavsky said.

Lipavsky said that over the course of the two-day summit, he spoke with many partners about joining Czechia's ammunition initiative.

"We discussed what NATO countries can do more for Ukraine, how to better coordinate aid, whether we can find additional resources," he said.

"It is necessary to persevere in this, to find other sources. I called on other countries to get involved or to turn these preliminary promises into real ones so that we can actually buy and deliver ammunition to Ukraine."

As of March 12, the initative has already secured the purchase of 300,000 shells and received nonbinding commitments from partners for 200,000 more, according to Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala. Around 15 countries have joined the initiative, including Canada, France, Denmark, Norway, and Sweden.

Diplomats convened in Brussels for a two-day summit focused on strategies to bolster Ukraine's defenses. Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba participated in the meeting, and announced in a joint address with German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock that Berlin will call on allies to increase air defense provisions to Ukraine.

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