Ukraine’s FM says EU to deploy advisory military training mission in Ukraine
The European Union has decided to deploy an advisory military training mission in Ukraine, the country’s foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, said after a meeting of the EU Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels on Feb. 21.
He said that it would be an “important political signal” regarding a strengthening of the EU presence in Ukraine, and the beginning of military cooperation with the body.
At the same time, Kuleba said that the parameters of this mission and the time of its deployment have not yet been nailed down.
“But a fundamental decision has been made,” the diplomat said.
“The mission will be advisory and training, these are not combat units. We’ve been working for a very long time with our friends in the EU to make it happen.”
On Oct. 3, 2021, the German Welt am Sonntag Sunday newspaper reported that the EU was considering the possibility of deploying a military training mission in Ukraine amid the escalation of hostilities in the Donbas provoked by the activity of Russian hybrid troops.
Later, Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry confirmed such plans.
Russia has been massing troops at the border since late October.
The U.S. ambassador to the OSCE, Michael Carpenter, said on Feb. 21 that nearly Russia has arrayed between 169,000 and 190,000 troops on the Russian-Ukrainian and Belarusian-Ukrainian border, and in the temporarily occupied territories of Crimea and the Donbas.
While officially denying its intention to carry out a large-scale invasion of Ukraine, Russia continues to provide arms and orders to its proxy groups in non-government controlled regions of Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts.
Meanwhile, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has emphasized that the country is ready to defend itself against the Russian invasion, regardless of the date.
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