Finland To Send Heavy Artillery To Ukraine

Sweden has also expressed its readiness to support Finland as necessary.

Ukrainian artillerymen from the 24th brigade load an ammunition inside of a 2S1 Gvozdika self-propelled howitzer at a position along the front line in the vicinity of Bakhmut, Donetsk region, on December 10, 2022 amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine. (Photo by Ihor Tkachov / AFP)


Finland announced Friday a 400-million-euro military aid package to Ukraine, its largest to date and including heavy artillery as well as munitions but no Leopard tanks.

“Ukraine continues to need support in defending its territory,” Defence Minister Mikko Savola said in a statement.

The ministry did not disclose more detailed information on the contents of the package but said the aid did not include Leopard battle tanks, special adviser Miikka Pynnonen told AFP.

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This is the Nordic country’s 12th package of defence materiel to Ukraine. The previous 11 had a combined value of 190 million euros (about $205 million).

The ministry also said Finland would sign a so-called Statement of Intent with Sweden on support for Ukraine, to make sure the aid “would not endanger the national defence of the two countries.”

“Finland supplies defence materiel to Ukraine, and Sweden expresses its readiness to support Finland as necessary,” the statement said.

On Thursday, Sweden pledged to send Ukraine its Archer artillery system, a modern mobile howitzer requested by Kyiv for months, along with armoured vehicles and anti-tank missiles.

Pressure has also been mounting on Germany from European allies to authorise exports of its Leopard tank, which are used by several armed forces around the world, including Finland.

“We hope that this decision (to deliver Leopards) will be made real, and Finland is definitely ready to play its part in that support,” Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto said on Tuesday.