Company to purchase MLRS ammunition for Ukraine established in Luxembourg
Grad MLRS (Photo:via Wikipedia)
Luxembourg created a special company which will be purchasing rockets for Grad Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS) and transferring them to Ukraine, The New York Times reported on Feb. 17.
The armed forces of Luxembourg consist of less than 1,000 troops, one cargo plane, two helicopters shared with the police, and less than 200 trucks. Earlier, Luxembourg sent Ukraine 102 anti-tank missiles and 20,000 machine gun rounds from its arsenals, and that was as many weapons as Luxembourg could spare, the report says.
“So, Luxembourg, a nation with a population of 645,000, decided to use its considerable wealth to try to buy weapons for Ukraine on the open market, and signed a multimillion-dollar deal last spring for 6,000 Soviet-era rockets,” NYT wrote.
The NYT reports that after the beginning of the Russian full-scale invasion, Luxembourg, determined to contribute more, created a two-man team of its own arms dealers. They intended to explore the commercial arms markets in Europe and the United States.
“We are so small, and we have no large army, and therefore limited stock, and we wanted from the beginning to help Ukraine,” said Luxembourg’s defense minister, Francois Bausch.
In the end, Luxembourg had to settle for 600 rockets for the ‘Grad’ MLRS, one tenth of the original goal, and hand them over to Ukraine. Bausch said he was able to negotiate or secure a contract worth about $94 million in weapons and other military assistance for Ukraine from manufacturers in the UK, France, Poland, and the Netherlands, costing nearly 16% of the country's defense budget.
Luxembourg arms dealers signed a contract with a Czech manufacturer to buy Soviet-era and NATO ammunition. They should be delivered this spring. The manufacturer, whose name the dealers asked not to be mentioned for security reasons, also sold them 12,500 RPG-7 anti-tank grenades.
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