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US continues to train Ukrainian soldiers in Germany
The United States continues training "a couple thousand" of Ukrainian soldiers at the training ground in Grafenwoehr, Germany, Pentagon spokesman General Patrick Ryder said during a press briefing on May 9.
"We will be able to maintain that support and that capability to train Ukrainians as long as the demand is there," Ryder said, adding that the U.S. officials continue to discuss combat and tactic needs with the Ukrainian partners.
According to Ryder, further training will depend on how many units the Ukrainian Armed Forces can send overseas to conduct the exercises.
"As always, a consideration... is how many forces do they (Ukrainians) keep in the field, vice getting trained, but I think, going back to what we've talked about all along during this conflict, is that providing equipment along with training gives the Ukrainians a capability, vice just having equipment," Ryder acknowledged. "Part of that capability includes the maintenance and sustainment of those capabilities."
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin announced in late April that the U.S. will begin training Ukrainian forces on American-made Abrams tanks in the coming weeks. Thirty-one Abrams M1A1s will arrive at a training area in Grafenwoehr in mid to late May, with up to 250 Ukrainian troops beginning a 10-week course there soon after, according to U.S. officials.
Roughly 8,800 Ukrainians have already completed various types of military instruction in Germany, with thousands more training now.