US urges Ramstein group to fulfill promptly arms and ammunition commitments to Ukraine

Smoke plumes after Russian shelling of Kiev, Ukraine – Eugen Kotenko / Zuma Press / Contactophoto

The United States on Wednesday reiterated to the Ramstein group, the coalition of more than 40 countries militarily supporting Ukraine, a message of urgency to »quickly» fulfill commitments to Kiev on arms and ammunition.

»We are at a crucial moment in the course of Ukraine’s struggle for freedom. And we must all demonstrate our determination and unity. That means meeting our commitments, fully and quickly,» U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said in opening remarks at the telematic meeting of the coalition in support of Kiev.

»No Ukrainian should have to endure daily shelling. No Ukrainian parent should have to worry about their child’s school being shelled. No nation should have to fight for its survival against a foreign invading force that razes entire towns and villages to the ground,» he told the other defense officials, in the face of the new wave of Russian attacks on Ukrainian civilian infrastructure.

At all times Austin has advocated that the group should provide Ukraine with »all the necessary capabilities for the fight ahead», emphasizing the spare parts and ammunition needed by the Ukrainian army. In this sense, he valued the »innovative solutions» to increase the production capacity of 155 millimeter ammunition, in the midst of the debate in the European Union to make joint purchases and sign long-term commitments with the arms industry.

Before the tenth meeting of the Ramstein group, which was born at the German military base as a coalition of countries led by Washington to coordinate military assistance to Ukraine, Austin stressed that the forum has become »a community of action» and emphasized that the group is prepared to support Ukraine in the long term.

»I am confident that we will continue our efforts to meet Ukraine’s needs this spring and well beyond,» he said, noting that Moscow, for its part, has no qualms about mobilizing ill-prepared and ill-equipped forces in order to escalate a »reckless war of conquest.»