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UK announces $311 million aid package to replenish Ukraine's artillery supplies

by Olena Goncharova February 24, 2024 5:28 AM 2 min read
UK Defense Minister Grant Shapps speaks during a press conference in central London on Dec. 11, 2023. (Lucy North/PA Images via Getty Images)
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On the second anniversary of Russia's full-scale invasion, the U.K. pledges £245 million ($311 million) to enhance Ukraine's artillery ammunition reserves within the next year, according to the country's defense ministry.

"They cannot win this fight without the support of the international community – and that’s why we continue to do what it takes to ensure Ukraine can continue to fight towards victory," British Defense Minister Grant Shapps said in a statement, Reuters reports.

Amidst its fight against Russia's aggression, Ukraine confronts severe shortages of ammunition and seeks increased military support from Western nations. The possibility of additional aid from the United States, its primary contributor, depends on a congressional vote.

The U.K. has pledged over $8.8 billion (seven billion pounds) of military assistance to Ukraine since February 2022.

As Ukraine transitions toward NATO-standard artillery, its military has heavily relied on shells sourced from U.S. stocks, supplemented by purchases from non-NATO allies, particularly South Korea.

Recognizing the urgent demand, European nations have initiated efforts to ramp up domestic production, although they have faced criticism for the time it has taken to achieve this.

However, with Republicans blocking U.S. military aid funding for Ukraine since late last year, the absence of new deliveries has been keenly felt on the battlefield.

Both Washington and Kyiv have acknowledged that one of the primary factors contributing to recent Russian successes, notably the capture of the city of Avdiivka, marking Moscow’s first significant territorial gains since May 2023, is Ukraine's shortage of artillery ammunition.

‘Our reserves will run out:’ Ukrainian artillery sounds alarm on Western shell shortage
Hiding beneath sparse winter cover in a crude, muddy ditch, a great steel monster lies in wait for an opportunity to attack. Adorned on either side with painted plus signs, the gun’s huge barrel looks up at the sky over the Bakhmut front line, across which thousands
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