13:12 30 Jun 2022

Swedish government to approve fifth military aid package for Ukrainian army

Sweden is preparing to provide Ukraine with a new batch of anti-tank weapons and machine guns

Defense Minister Peter Hultqvist said this in a comment to TT.

As the minister noted, the package includes anti-tank weapons, machine guns, and demining equipment.

According to Hultqvist, the Ukrainian side asked for these weapons.

The total cost of weapons and equipment is SEK 500 million.

The government should agree on the decision on Thursday, June 30.

We will remind you that Sweden announced the fourth package at the beginning of June. Finance Minister Mikael Damberg and Defence Minister Peter Hultqvist announced it. It included anti-ship missiles, anti-tank weapons, and small arms.

"The proposals that are submitted (to parliament) mean that allocated funds for the central government budget will increase by SEK 1.0 billion ($102 million) in 2022," the Nordic country's finance ministry said in a statement.

"In solidarity with Ukraine, and as part of the international response to Russia's actions, the government sees a continuing need to support Ukraine," it said.

Sweden in February announced it would send military material including 5,000 anti-tank weapons, helmets, and body armor to Ukraine, and in March announced it would send another 5,000 anti-tank weapons.

For the first time since World War II, Sweden sent weapons to a country at war: Ukraine. The shipments included 5,000 anti-tank weapons manufactured by Saab, plus 5,000 helmets, 5,000 body shields, and 135,000 field rations.

During the 1990s, in the aftermath of the Cold War, the Swedish neutrality doctrine was replaced by a somewhat more flexible policy, specifying that Sweden is militarily non-aligned in peacetime and aims to remain neutral in case of war.

Sweden sending weapons to one side in a European war is widely considered a break with that position and now russia's war in Ukraine has seen a majority of the population swing in favor of Nato membership.

On May 18, 2022, Finland and Sweden handed in their official letters of application to join NATO.

The North Atlantic Alliance has officially invited the, until recently, neutral non-aligned countries Sweden and Finland into its ranks.

Alliance Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg announced this at the NATO summit in Madrid.

Read Rubryka's Timeline of War: current news on Ukraine's defense against russia's aggression.

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