France Steps Up to Aid Ukraine

( – France has positioned itself as one of Ukraine’s top allies amid the Russian invasion of the Eastern European nation. French President Emmanuel Macron has even expressed that he would put boots on the ground in the country if it came to that. Now, France is helping in a different way.

On March 31, the French newspaper La Tribune Dimanche published an interview with Defense Minister Sébastien Lecornu. He announced the government was sending “hundreds” of armored vehicles to Ukraine by January 2025. According to the minister, France’s military is currently upgrading its old VAB armored personnel carriers with a new generation. The old ones have been in service since 1979.

“This old equipment, still operational, is going directly to Ukraine in large quantities,” Lecornu told the journalist.

The defense minister explained that Ukraine needs the equipment in order to hold the frontline. He said armored vehicles are “absolutely key for troop mobility” and that the Ukrainian government has specifically requested them.

France is also sending the Ukrainian military more Aster 30 missiles and 78 Caesar howitzers, and increasing its supply of shells.

In early March, France published a list of all the military aid it had sent to Kyiv since the beginning of the war. It amounted to €2.6 billion ($2.8 billion). They released the list after German Chancellor Olaf Scholz called for an audit of national contributions in order to determine how much money each nation should receive in reimbursements from a European Union fund. Scholz accused the French government of not pulling its weight, something they vehemently denied.

Although the French have sent more than $2 billion in aid, Germany has sent over $19 billion since the conflict began, making them the top European ally.

The war is now in its third year and doesn’t appear to be any closer to ending than it did in the beginning.

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