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France to provide artillery, air defense package to Ukraine

by Dmytro Basmat February 16, 2024 11:18 PM 1 min read
French President Emmanuel Macron welcomes Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky prior to a meeting at the Elysee Presidential Palace on Feb. 16, 2024, in Paris, France. (Chesnot/Getty Images)
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France will provide Ukraine with a defense package that includes artillery shells and Caesar howitzers, as well as reinforced air defense systems, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky announced at a press conference alongside French President Emmanuel Macron on Feb. 16.  

"I am grateful to the president of France for all this strong military assistance we are receiving," said Zelensky. "Today, another defense package. Just the one we need. These are shells for artillery, cannons, effective 'Caesar' systems, additional reinforcement of air defense."

Withholding specific details on the package, Zelensky made the announcement alongside Macron as they concurrently signed a bilateral agreement on security cooperation, which will provide 3 billion euros ($3.2 billion) in military aid this year.

This is the third bilateral security agreement that Kyiv finalized with its partners based on commitments made by G7 countries last July.

Referring to the military assistance, Zelensky said the new package is "an absolutely worthy response to Putin's attempts to increase pressure on (Ukrainian) positions."

According to the Kiel Institute's Ukraine tracker, France has thus far unilaterally contributed nearly 1.8 billion euros ($1.92 billion) in humanitarian, military, and financial assistance for Ukraine since the start of Russia's full-scale invasion in February 2022.

Zelensky, Macron sign security agreement between Ukraine, France
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, signed a bilateral agreement on security cooperation, the two heads of state announced during a press briefing in France on Feb. 16.
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