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Czechia turns to export licenses as arms for Ukraine run low

by Abbey Fenbert November 27, 2023 12:37 AM 2 min read
Czech Defense Minister Jana Cernochova at a press conference in Prague on Sept. 9, 2022. (Lukas Kabon/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
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Czechia is running low on military equipment it can send to Ukraine from its own stockpiles, Czech Defense Minister Jana Cernochova said on local television Nov. 26, according to Czech outlet CTK.

Cernochova said her country would compensate for the low supply by providing commercial licenses to private companies.

"There is not much military equipment that we can send to Ukraine," Cernochova said.

"On the other hand, we will try to compensate for the impossibility of supplying arms from our stocks, because we do not want to jeopardize our defense capability, with export licenses, which we give to private companies."

According to Cernochova, these contracts with private firms will allow Czechia to continue providing military aid to Ukraine. She said that significant amounts of equipment have already been provided through private companies and donors.

Cernochova also referenced the recent joint Czech-Danish initiative to supply Ukraine with armored vehicles and other weapons produced in Czechia and financed by Denmark.

"Of course, some countries that are helping Russia are equipping Russia with their equipment, just as we are equipping Ukraine. It is not easy to catch up and overtake the other side in the arms race, and it may mean for Ukraine that some things are not going as they had planned in advance," Chernokhova said.

The Czech Defense Ministry has published a list of military equipment it has provided to Ukraine since the start of Russia's full-scale invasion. Shipments include aircraft, tanks, combat vehicles, rocket launchers, small arms, and ammunition.

Investigation: Czech parts make their way to Russian military helicopters despite sanctions
Editor’s Note: This story is based on an investigation by Trap Aggressor, a project by Ukrainian NGO StateWatch, that advocates for principles of good governance. The investigation’s author, Roman Steblivskyi, is a researcher at StateWatch. This story has been translated from Ukrainian and edited by…

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