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Latvia Announces New Military Support Package for Ukraine in 2024

In a sustained effort to assist Ukraine amid current challenges, the Latvian government has sanctioned a significant aid package for the year 2024, totaling €9.6 million. As shared by Olena Kondratiuk, Deputy Head of Ukraine's Verkhovna Rada, via a Facebook post, this financial aid is partitioned into two primary segments: €5.3 million dedicated to Ukraine's reconstruction and €4.3 million aimed at bolstering the Ukrainian Armed Forces through the European Peace Facility.
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In 2024, the Latvian government's projected support for Ukraine is set to exceed €200 million, including approximately €112 million in military aid, equivalent to 0.25% of the GDP 

Specifically, Latvia has committed to the recovery and reconstruction of the Chernihiv region, focusing on a series of key initiatives. This year's governmental plan involves rebuilding social infrastructure within the region, providing psychological support to women, implementing digitalization, and offering consultations on territorial planning and EU integration. This highlights Latvia's commitment to Ukraine's long-term recovery.

Earlier, Latvian Foreign Minister Krisjanis Karins stated that frozen Russian assets in the West should be utilized not just for Ukraine's reconstruction but also for the purchase of weapons for the country. This stance underscores a broader strategic approach aimed at bolstering Ukraine's resilience and defensive capabilities against challenges.

With this latest aid initiative, Latvia continues to display its staunch support for Ukraine, contributing to both reconstruction efforts and military strengthening. This move reaffirms Latvia's commitment to aiding its neighbor during these challenging times, marking a significant milestone in bilateral relations between the two nations and in broader European support for Ukraine.

Since the onset of the war in Ukraine, Latvia has provided military aid amounting to nearly 1% of its Gross Domestic Product. This support includes material assistance as well as extensive military training, with around 4000 Ukrainian armed forces personnel trained since the full-scale invasion began.

Financially, Latvia's defense sector has contributed €370 million in military support, including drones, helicopters, howitzers, personal weapons and equipment, ammunition, anti-tank weapons, Stinger air defense systems, radars, ration packs, IT equipment, land vehicles, fuel, and various weapon systems. In 2024, the Latvian government's projected support for Ukraine is set to exceed €200 million, including approximately €112 million in military aid, equivalent to 0.25% of the GDP.

Latvia has also spearheaded the Drone Coalition for Ukraine. Drones are a crucial asset for Ukraine, significantly impacting war strategies and tactical command. The Drone Coalition for Ukraine, initiated by Latvia, aims to make drone deliveries to Ukraine as efficient and swift as possible, while also enhancing the UAV capabilities of Latvia and other allies. At the NATO Defense Ministers' Meeting in Brussels in February 2024, the United Kingdom, Denmark, Estonia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Ukraine, Germany, and Sweden signed a letter of intent to join the coalition, followed by Canada and Australia in March.

By signing the letter of intent, these countries have committed to allocating resources for drone manufacturing and delivering these drones along with spare parts to Ukraine, where they will be tested. The coalition also plans to train Ukrainian troops on their use and integration with other technologies.

The Ministry of Defense has gathered information about drones from Ukraine and has already reached out to local companies, inviting them to propose a delivery structure for drones and spare parts based on specifications. Latvia intends to invest at least €10 million annually in the further development of the Drone Coalition for Ukraine, affirming its commitment to supporting Ukraine in facing current and future challenges.

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