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Belgium to provide military aid of 611 million euros to Ukraine in 2024.

| Defense News Army 2024

Belgian Defense Minister Ludivine Dedonder officially announced on Monday, January 23, 2024, that Belgium is committed to providing substantial military support to Ukraine this year, totaling 611 million euros. The announcement came during a crucial interview between Minister Dedonder and her Ukrainian counterpart, Rustem Umerov.
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The Ukrainian soldier at the center is armed with a Belgian-supplied FN Minimi light machine gun (Picture source: )

The backdrop to this substantial aid package lies in the freezing of Russian assets within Belgium, most notably held within Euroclear, an international payments management body based in Belgium. The total value of these frozen assets is a staggering 180 billion euros, and Euroclear has reported record profits from managing these assets, which are subsequently reinvested.

This financial commitment from Belgium holds particular significance given its source. According to the Belgian minister's office, this aid package primarily consists of interest accrued on Russian assets that have been frozen in Belgium in the wake of the Russian aggression against Ukraine and as part of the European Union's collective response to the crisis.

Belgium's commitment to providing military support to Ukraine not only underscores its dedication to international security but also emphasizes the significant role that financial assets can play in fostering international cooperation in times of crisis.

"We also continue to provide humanitarian support to the Ukrainian people, announced Prime Minister Alexander De Croo, alongside the ministers of Defence. "Our country has been making efforts to assist Ukraine from day one. We were one of the first countries to provide military support to Ukraine, in the form of weapons, at a time when many other countries were still in doubt. Our country has provided a total of 146 million EUR in military support since the beginning of the war. This ranges from fuel and ammunition and mobile laboratories to anti-aircraft guns. Today, the Council of Ministers has decided to add a new package of 90 million in military aid, making it the largest Belgian military support package to date".

Prime Minister De Croo went on: "But the war today is not only waged on the battlefield. Russia's so-called "special military operation" is not only a war. Despite all the provisions of the law of war, Russians are also directly attacking the Ukrainian population. These are clear violations of the rules of war and Russia will one day be held accountable. In the meantime, we must continue to support Ukraine and the Ukrainian people, including civilians through humanitarian support, comprising ambulances, medical kits, tents and generators".

Defense News January 2024

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