- Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has said his country needs more munitions in the war against Russia.
- Members of the European Parliament voted 518 to 39 in favor of speeding up the production of missiles and munitions to support Ukraine.
- Ukraine plans to launch a spring counteroffensive to recapture Russian-occupied lands, but it is burning munitions at an unexpected rate.
European Union lawmakers agreed on Tuesday to speed up legislation to ramp up production of munitions and missiles in the 27-nation bloc to support the war effort in Ukraine.
MEPs voted 518-39 with 31 abstentions to launch an urgent procedure that should allow the bill to be adopted during the next plenary session of the EU legislature later this month, after which talks can begin with EU member countries.
Quickly obtaining “badly needed munitions” in Ukraine is essential, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on Tuesday during a joint press conference with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen in Kyiv.
EUROPEAN UNION ANNOUNCES PLANS TO INCREASE AMMUNITION PRODUCTION TO HELP UKRAINE
“We also discussed the key issues – the speed of procurement and delivery of these munitions because they are needed on the battlefield, already now,” Zelenskyy said.
The European Parliament’s move came after leaders of bloc member countries approved a plan in March to send Ukraine 1 million rounds of artillery munitions within the next 12 months. The executive arm of the EU, led by von der Leyen, later announced a plan to assist Ukraine and replenish Europe’s stockpiles by increasing large-scale production of munitions with a budget of $548 million.
THE UNITED STATES SHIPPING OVER 1.5 MILLION 155MM AMMUNITION TO UKRAINE. THIS IS WHY AMMUNITION IS SO CRUCIAL.
Ukraine is set to launch a planned spring counter-offensive to recover Russian-occupied territory, but the country has been burning munitions at a furious pace, according to analysts. The Western allies have supplied ammunition and the Kiev government has asked them to supply much more.
Thierry Breton, EU commissioner for the internal market, welcomed the decision of the European Parliament to start the emergency procedure which he defined as a “decisive move”.
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“We stand ready to work with the co-legislators to urgently find an agreement,” he wrote on Twitter. “For Ukraine, for our security, for a real European defence”.