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Ex-NATO chief: 'We need outside-the-box thinking' on providing Ukraine with arms

by Dinara Khalilova and The Kyiv Independent news desk February 17, 2024 6:31 PM 2 min read
Anders Fogh Rasmussen, former prime minister of Denmark, at Munich Security Conference 2024 on Feb. 17, 2024. (Olena Zashko / The Kyiv Independent)
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Kyiv's partners "need outside-the-box thinking" regarding providing Ukraine with sufficient weaponry to repel Russia's full-scale invasion, ex-NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen told reporters at the Munich Security Conference on Feb. 17.

"At the end of the day, it's a question of raising the necessary funds for purchasing ammunition and weapons outside Europe, outside the U.S., wherever we can get it," Rasmussen said, responding to a question from the Kyiv Independent.

Rasmussen's comment comes at a crucial moment for Ukraine. The military was forced to withdraw on Feb. 17 from the heavily battered city of Avdiivka in Donetsk Oblast as Russian forces attempted to encircle it.

Meanwhile, the country is facing a growing shortage of ammunition as further aid to Ukraine remains tied up in the U.S. Congress.

Dutch PM: Netherlands actively working on bilateral security guarantees for Ukraine
“We are discussing intensely now with (President) Volodymyr Zelensky’s team on coming up with security guarantees... And I’m cautiously optimistic that we can close these discussions pretty soon,” Rutte said in press comments at the Munich Security Conference.

When asked by the Kyiv Independent why Ukraine is not being supplied with enough ammunition and other weapons, Rasmussen replied that aliies should change their "political attitude."

"There are some physical limits as to how quickly you can scale up production of ammunition, but there are things you can do immediately. You could deliver them on Feb. 24 this year if you wish."

Rasmussen said that Germany could decide to provide Ukraine with Taurus long-range missiles as "they are in inventory already," while the U.S. could deliver more ATACMS missiles to Ukraine.

"I do not say that the delivery should be public. On the contrary, if we could surprise the Russians, they would be even more efficient," added Rasmussen.

"That could be done easily immediately."

Zelensky in Munich: ‘If Ukraine left alone, Russia will destroy us’
“Keeping Ukraine in the artificial deficits of weapons, particularly in a deficit of artillery and long-range capabilities, allows (Russian President Vladimir) Putin to adapt to the current intensity of the war,” President Volodymyr Zelensky said.


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