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UK confirms it will supply Ukraine with 14 Challenger 2 tanks and about 30 AS-90

Sunday, 15 January 2023, 08:37
UK confirms it will supply Ukraine with 14 Challenger 2 tanks and about 30 AS-90

The UK government has confirmed plans to provide Ukraine with a squadron of 14 Challenger 2 tanks and about 30 155 mm AS-90 Self-Propelled Howitzers (SPHs).

Source: UK government, as reported by European Pravda.

Details: The report states that UK defence and security officials believe that a window has opened in which Russia is retreating due to supply problems and plummeting morale. The UK Prime Minister is therefore urging allies to deploy the support planned for 2023 as soon as possible to achieve maximum effect.


Quote: "Sending Challenger 2 tanks to Ukraine is the start of a gear change in the UK’s support. A squadron of 14 tanks will go into the country in the coming weeks. Around 30 AS90 SPHs, which are large, self-propelled guns, operated by five gunners, are expected to follow," the report states.

Details: The Defence Secretary will set out further details of this assistance in the House of Commons on 16 January.

In the coming days, the UK will also start training Ukrainian Armed Forces personnel in the use of these tanks and guns, as part of a wider effort that has seen thousands of Ukrainian troops trained in the UK over the past six months.

Quote: "The Prime Minister is clear that a long and static war only serves Russia’s ends. That’s why he and his ministers will be speaking to our allies across the world in the days and weeks ahead to ramp up pressure on Putin and secure a better future for Ukraine," a Downing Street spokesman said.

Details: On the eve of the one-year anniversary of the Russian invasion, the prime minister will seek to demonstrate the UK's strength as an international catalyst with influence in NATO, the G7, the Joint Expeditionary Force and elsewhere.

As part of this effort, the UK Defence Secretary will visit Estonia and Germany to work with NATO allies and other international partners to accelerate military support for Ukraine.

And the Foreign Secretary will visit the United States later this week to discuss how the UK and US can use their positions as leading supporters of Ukraine to encourage further international action.

He will also visit Canada, another of Ukraine's strongest supporters, to discuss closer coordination of international sanctions and their coordinated efforts to strengthen support for Ukraine.

The small number of tanks taken from Britain's stockpile of 227 tanks will not in itself make much difference on the battlefield, but it will be the first time that any Western country has agreed to send its heavy armoured vehicles to Ukraine.

Kyiv hopes that this will pave the way for a positive decision by Germany.

According to Bloomberg, the German federal government may announce a decision on the supply of Western tanks to Ukraine next week.

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has said that five countries are ready to transfer Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine but are waiting for Germany's decision.

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