NZ to provide non-lethal military assistance to Ukraine
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta announced today that New Zealand will provide a further $5 million contribution of non-lethal military assistance to support Ukraine, and are making available a range of surplus defence equipment to share with Ukraine at their request.
Funding will be primarily directed to the NATO Trust Fund which provides much needed fuel, military rations, communications and military first aid kits to support Ukraine.
“As I confirmed to Prime Minister Shmyhal in our weekend call, New Zealand’s support for Ukraine is unwavering, and we will continue to identify the ways in which we can help provide critical assistance to combat Russia’s aggression,” Jacinda Ardern said.
“We are playing our part in the coordinated global effort to support Ukraine. By contributing directly to the NATO Trust Fund, Ukrainian forces on the ground can benefit from the additional assistance immediately.
“This support responds to specific requests from the Ukrainian Government, and focuses on items identified as having the most strategic value to those in the conflict.
“This is the first time New Zealand has provided direct funding to a third party organisation for non-lethal military assistance of this kind, and underscores the importance of rejecting any actions which have adverse consequences for state sovereignty, and that we must defend in every way we can, the democratic institutions and principles that New Zealand so deeply believes in,” Jacinda Ardern said.
“While Russia continues to disregard avenues of diplomacy and de-escalation, New Zealand will reinforce the efforts of the international community in supporting Ukraine and its self-defence,” Nanaia Mahuta said.
“The Government has also decided to support the Ukrainian forces, through the provision of tactical defence equipment such as body armour, helmets and vests.”
The equipment currently held by the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) that will be sent to Ukraine, at the request of their Government, consists of:
- 1066 x Body Armour Plates
- 473 x Helmets
- 571 x Camouflage Vests/Harness Webbing
“The NZDF is now working urgently on the details of how this much needed equipment will be swiftly delivered to Ukraine,” Nanaia Mahuta said.
“Officials will continue to monitor humanitarian needs and assess options for further support.
”Aotearoa New Zealand stands with the international community in condemning Putin’s unjustified and illegal attack on Ukraine,” Nanaia Mahuta said.
Today’s announcements add to the rolling economic sanctions imposed, as well as the $6m previously provided in humanitarian support, bringing New Zealand’s total financial contribution to $11 million.