According to the Ministry of Defense, these defense systems represent the “heaviest artillery of the Dutch army”, allowing targets to be attacked from a distance of 50 kilometers.
Germany will ensure the training of Ukrainian soldiers in the use of these armored vehicles.
According to the Dutch news agency ANP, the transport of this military material will take place within a month.
“This is exactly what Ukraine says it needs now,” said Dutch Defense Minister Kajsa Ollongren, quoted by the ANP.
The minister clarified that training in artillery handling can take “weeks or even months”, but recalled that even after the war, weapons are of great importance to the Ukrainian army.
The decision of the Dutch government to release this military material has been criticized for fear of the consequences for the ability and efficiency of the Dutch army.
Although this country does not need all of its armored vehicles, “it is important for operational capabilities that defense systems are in reserve,” warned Niels van Woensel, president of the Dutch Officers’ Union.
German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht today reiterated Berlin’s commitment to Ukraine by confirming permission to use anti-aircraft Gepard tanks.
Christine Lambrecht spoke at a conference at the U.S. base in Ramstein, Germany, attended by U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austion, NATO Secretary General Jens Stotenberg and a large number of European Union defense ministers.
This decision marks an important turning point in the cautious policy that Germany has pursued so far in terms of its military support for Kiev.
France has already announced the dispatch of a Ceasar off-road vehicle equipped with a 155mm cannon capable of hitting a target 40 kilometers away, while the UK has supplied Starstreak anti-aircraft missiles and armored vehicles to Kiev.
Russia launched a military offensive in Ukraine on February 24, and according to the UN, the actual numbers are likely to be much higher.
The organization also revealed that the military attack has already caused more than 12 million people to flee, more than five million of whom have fled the country.