Latvia Leads Coalition to Provide Drones for Ukraine's Defense Against Russia

Latvia leads a coalition of 20+ countries to provide Ukraine with 1 million drones, a vital tool in defending against Russia's aerial attacks. Significant commitments from members like Canada, Lithuania, and the Netherlands underscore the coalition's growing momentum.

Ayesha Mumtaz
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Latvia Leads Coalition to Provide Drones for Ukraine's Defense Against Russia

Latvia Leads Coalition to Provide Drones for Ukraine's Defense Against Russia

Latvia is spearheading a coalition of over 20 countries to supply Ukraine with thousands of drones to bolster its defense against Russia. The coalition, which includes the UK, Germany, Canada, the Netherlands, Lithuania, Sweden, Estonia, and Denmark, aims to provide one million drones to meet Ukraine's needs.

As part of this effort, Latvia will soon deliver its first major contribution - drones worth 1 million euros. The high-quality drones have been tested and procured with the involvement of Latvia's local industry. Latvia plans to allocate at least 10 million euros per year for the development of the drone coalition.

During a recent extraordinary meeting of the coalition's leadership group, significant commitments were made by member countries. Canada pledged to transfer 450 SkyRanger multi-purpose air defense missiles to Ukraine starting this summer. Lithuania committed 3 million euros for the production of FPV drones to enhance Ukraine's surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities. The Netherlands, in collaboration with Denmark and Germany, confirmed its intention to contract a batch of Heidrun RQ-35 drones worth 200 million euros. Germany will also be transferring VECTOR 211 reconnaissance drones to aid in intelligence and surveillance operations.

Why this matters:The delivery of drones from the coalition is seen as an essential part of Ukraine's war efforts, as Russia has intensified its drone and missile strikes against civilian targets and critical infrastructure. Ukraine has requested a NATO-Ukraine Council meeting to discuss air defense and the supply of air defense systems to protect against these aerial attacks.

Kateryna Chernogorenko, Ukraine's Deputy Minister of Defense, emphasized the critical situation on the front lines and the need for tools for an asymmetric response. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has drawn parallels between the recent Iranian drone attack on Israel and the attacks by Russia using similar Iranian-made drones, urging Western leaders to defend Ukraine in the same way.

The drone coalition, co-led by Great Britain and Latvia, represents a vital platform for coordinating international support and capabilities to aid Ukraine in its defense efforts. Latvian Defense Minister Andris Spruds urged coalition members to actively participate and encourage more countries to join the initiative. With the coalition gaining momentum, it marks a significant step forward in providing Ukraine with the necessary tools to protect its skies and defend against Russian aggression.

Key Takeaways

  • Latvia leads coalition of 20+ countries to supply Ukraine with 1 million drones.
  • Latvia to deliver first major contribution of 1 million euros worth of drones.
  • Canada pledges 450 SkyRanger missiles, Lithuania 3 million euros for FPV drones.
  • Netherlands, Denmark, Germany to contract 200 million euros worth of Heidrun RQ-35 drones.
  • Drone coalition represents a vital platform to aid Ukraine's defense against Russia.