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Stoltenberg: NATO countries to increase support for Ukraine

by The Kyiv Independent news desk February 15, 2023 4:55 PM 2 min read
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg gives a press conference following the North Atlantic Council of Defense Ministers, at the NATO headquarters in Brussels, on Feb. 14, 2019. (Photo by François WALSCHAERTS / AFP via Getty Images)
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NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said on Feb. 15 that the alliance members had pledged new commitments to support Ukraine with heavy equipment and military training at the meeting of the alliance's defense ministers.

“Ukraine has a window of opportunity to change the balance of power, and time is of the essence,” he said.

Stoltenberg didn’t elaborate on the type of military aid committed.

NATO members have also agreed to increase their defense production amid Russia’s war and to adopt a multinational project on the creation of NATO ammunition depots.

Russian dictator Vladimir Putin has started new offensive actions in Ukraine, “sending in thousands and thousands more troops,” Stoltenberg said on Feb. 13, as quoted by the Financial Times.

“It is clear that we are in the race of logistics. Key capabilities like ammunition...must reach Ukraine before Russia can seize the initiative on the battlefield.”

According to Ukraine's intelligence, Russia has started a new major offensive in the east to try to capture the entire Donbas, an industrial heartland comprising Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, by March.

Stoltenberg earlier told reporters that NATO needed to increase ammunition production, which is expected to be the key subject of discussion at the Feb. 14 meeting, according to the Financial Times.

“The war in Ukraine is consuming an enormous amount of munitions and depleting allied stockpiles. The current rate of Ukraine’s ammunition expenditure is many times higher than our current rate of production. This puts our defense industries under strain,” said the NATO chief.

He added that the faster Ukraine could be provided with weapons, ammunition, and other equipment, the more lives could be saved.

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