Belgian Defence to provide 611 million euros in military aid for Ukraine this year

Belgian Defence will give Ukraine 611 million euros in military aid this year, Defence minister Ludivine Dedonder said on Monday in a conversation with her Ukrainian counterpart, Bloomberg writes. According to Dedonder's office, the money comes from interest on frozen Russian assets.

Ukrainian Defence minister Rustem Umerov revealed on X that he had a telephone conversation with Dedonder on Monday about military aid at the front. Among other things, they discussed Belgian participation in the coalition of countries that will train Ukrainian pilots.

Dedonder's office confirmed on Tuesday that the meeting had taken place. The 611 million euros in military aid is the amount that the Belgian Defence department receives from the interests on frozen Russian assets, Dedonder explained.

Shortly after Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the EU decided to freeze Russian assets on its territory. The vast majority of these are on Belgian territory at Euroclear, a major player in international payments. The total amount of frozen assets is around 180 billion euros, from which Euroclear is making record profits, which it is also investing.

F-16 coalition

Since Russia's invasion of Ukraine almost two years ago, Belgium has shown its support by participating in the international F-16 coalition and has pledged to supply F-16s to Ukraine in 2025. It has developed a mechanism to trace Russian diamonds and set up a support fund indirectly financed by interest on frozen Russian assets. It has also supplied generators and recently allocated 2.5 million euros to install solar panels on the roofs of Ukrainian hospitals.

In December, the federal government gave the green light for a 19th package of defence aid to Ukraine. The latest package consisted mainly of bulletproof vests and a large number of generators.


Belgian Defence minister Ludivine Dedonder © BELGA PHOTO NICOLAS MAETERLINCK

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