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Belgium signs security deal with Ukraine, pledges $1 billion in aid this year

by Martin Fornusek May 28, 2024 10:51 AM 2 min read
Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky and Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo after signing a bilateral security agreement on May 28, 2024. (Prime Minister Alexander De Croo/X)
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Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky and Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo signed a 10-year bilateral security agreement in Brussels on May 28, the Presidential Office announced.

Belgium becomes the 11th country to sign such a deal, along with Spain, the U.K., Germany, France, Denmark, Italy, Canada, the Netherlands, Finland, and Latvia.

Zelensky arrived in Belgium one day after his trip to Spain, where he signed the security agreement with Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez.

Under the agreement, Belgium will allocate at least 977 million euros (around $1 billion) in military aid for Ukraine in 2024.

The document also says that Belgium will supply Kyiv with 30 F-16 fighter jets by 2028, with the first planes expected to arrive already this year.

The country announced in 2023 it would supply Kyiv with its F-16 jets but the exact number was unclear until today. Denmark, the Netherlands, and Norway also pledged to donate their F-16s to bolster Ukraine's Air Force.

Apart from the fighter jets, the agreement focuses on Ukraine's other key needs, including air defenses, artillery, and armored vehicles, De Croo said during a press conference after the signing ceremony.

The two parties agreed to cooperate in the defense industry, intelligence, cyber security, and countering disinformation.

The Western European country further pledged support for Ukraine's peace formula, EU and NATO aspirations, sanctions against Russia, compensation for war damages, bringing the aggressor to justice, and using seized Russian assets for Ukraine's needs.

"Today Belgium signs an agreement on security cooperation and long-term support with Ukraine," De Croo said on X.

"President... (Volodymyr Zelensky,) you need the right tools to protect your citizens. We are very determined when it comes to our support."

"I thank Prime Minister De Croo, his government, and all Belgians for their unwavering and long-lasting support for Ukraine," Zelensky said.

The Belgian Foreign Ministry said last week that its Ukraine fund had allocated 1.7 billion euros ($1.9 billion) for military and humanitarian assistance for Kyiv in 2024.

Ukraine, Spain sign bilateral security agreement
Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky and Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez signed a bilateral security agreement between the two countries on May 27.
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