Ukraine demands more ammunition from Australia, France

Ukraine is appealing to Australia and France for additional ammunition on the second anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion. The Ukrainian ambassador to Australia, Vasyl Myroshnychenko, urged western leaders not to tire of the prolonged war, emphasizing that Ukraine is the one suffering casualties. France and Australia had previously announced a joint effort to provide 155-millimetre ammunition to Ukraine, and Myroshnychenko confirmed the successful completion of this project.

As the conflict’s two-year mark approaches, Myroshnychenko expressed concerns about the US Congress’s delay in approving a $60 billion package, with potential impact on Ukraine’s defense capabilities and ammunition. He acknowledged Russian President Vladimir Putin’s reliance on perceived fatigue but stressed Ukraine’s ability to fight effectively with proper equipment. While grateful for Australia’s support, Myroshnychenko mentioned a “missed opportunity” with Australia’s decommissioned MRH90 Taipan helicopters and hoped for consideration in case of surplus equipment.

Australia’s total support to Ukraine, including military aid, reached $960 million, but Myroshnychenko highlighted the potential consequences of a prolonged war on Australians’ cost of living and regional stability. He expressed hope for the establishment of an Australian embassy in Kyiv and suggested donating out-of-service helicopters to Ukraine.

Opposition leader Peter Dutton called for reinstating an Australian embassy in Kyiv and donating helicopters, criticizing the Albanese government’s handling. However, government sources emphasized ongoing collaboration with partners to support Ukraine. A spokesperson for Deputy Prime Minister Richard Marles reaffirmed Australia’s solidarity with Ukraine and condemned Russia’s invasion.

World Vision reported the dire situation for over 3.3 million displaced or affected children in Ukraine, facing attacks, blackouts, and trauma. Putin, in an interview with Tucker Carlson, criticized US support for Ukraine and praised Donald Trump for influencing NATO’s future.

As the conflict in Ukraine approaches its two-year mark, the Ukrainian ambassador, Vasyl Myroshnychenko, expressed apprehension about the delayed approval of a $60 billion package in the US Congress. He noted that the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, might be counting on potential fatigue among Western nations. Despite this, Myroshnychenko emphasized the resilience of the Ukrainian people and their capability to effectively combat the invasion if adequately equipped.

While expressing gratitude for Australia’s support, Myroshnychenko highlighted a missed opportunity with Australia’s decommissioned MRH90 Taipan helicopters. He expressed hope that if there were surplus equipment, Ukraine would be considered, as it could significantly contribute to ending the ongoing conflict.

Australia’s total support to Ukraine, amounting to $960 million, was acknowledged, but Myroshnychenko stressed the potential ramifications of an extended war on the cost of living for Australians and regional stability. He expressed optimism about the establishment of an Australian embassy in Kyiv and suggested that having a representative on the ground would facilitate better communication with stakeholders in Ukraine.

Opposition leader Peter Dutton, along with frontbench colleagues Simon Birmingham and Andrew Hastie, urged the government to reinstate an Australian embassy in Kyiv and donate out-of-service MRH-90 Taipan helicopters to Ukraine. They criticized the Albanese government’s handling of the situation compared to the bipartisan support during the Coalition government.

Government sources, however, clarified that Australia continues to collaborate with partners to provide meaningful support for Ukraine. A spokesperson for Deputy Prime Minister Richard Marles reiterated Australia’s commitment to supporting Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity against Russia’s illegal invasion.

World Vision’s report underscored the alarming conditions faced by over 3.3 million displaced or affected children in Ukraine, highlighting the need for urgent international attention to alleviate their suffering.

In a recent interview, Russian President Putin criticized US support for Ukraine, deeming it harmful and mistaken, while praising former President Donald Trump for influencing NATO’s long-term future. The geopolitical dynamics surrounding the conflict continue to evolve, emphasizing the importance of international collaboration to address the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine.

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