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EU flags in front of the European Commission building in Brussels, Belgium, on Dec. 28, 2023. (Dursun Aydemir/Anadolu via Getty Images)
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The European Union will host an EU-Ukraine Defense Industries Forum on May 6 to boost cooperation with Ukraine's defense industry, the EU announced on May 2.

The forum will reportedly gather over 350 representatives from EU institutions, governments, European and Ukrainian defense industries, industry associations, and key partner countries to "strengthen defense industrial cooperation between the EU and Ukraine."

Kyiv has repeatedly called on international partners to expand support of air defense systems in the wake of increased Russian aerial attacks on civilian areas. Additionally, the Ukrainian military continues to face a critical ammunition shortage amidst delays in U.S. aid.

The upcoming forum promises to address Ukraine's priority areas in air defense, ammunition, missiles, and drones.

According to an official EU statement, the meeting is the first, concrete step in the implementation of the European Defense Industrial Strategy (EDIS) aimed at supporting the competitiveness and readiness of the bloc's defense industry.

The performance of the European defense industry, especially when it comes to supporting Ukraine, has been lackluster, as the EU failed on its promise to deliver 1 million artillery shells between March 2023 and 2024. After supplying only about half of the promised rounds, Brussels shifted the deadline to the end of this year.

Josep Borrell, the EU's top diplomat, will lead the forum, along with EU Commissioner Thierry Breton, the Belgian Minister of Defense, and the Ukrainian Minister for Strategic Industries, Oleksandr Kamyshin.

Russian strikes overwhelm Ukraine’s overstretched air defense amid Western aid delays
Over March and April, Russian airpower launched a new wave of mass attacks on energy infrastructure in Ukraine. Energy generating facilities, in particular coal-fired and hydroelectric power plants, have come under the heaviest attacks. For the first time, Russia destroyed or damaged several of Ukr…
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