European countries have pledged over 1.5 billion euros ($1.55 billion) in various forms of assistance to the Ukraine military amid an ongoing Russian military operation in the country.
The pledge was made by the defense ministers of 26 European countries during a conference in the Danish capital of Copenhagen on Thursday, Reuters reported, citing Danish Defense Minister Morten Bodskov.
The money will be used to supply weapons, missiles and ammunition, increase weapon production for Ukraine, train Ukrainian soldiers, and de-mine war-torn areas in the country.
"We will continue to assist Ukraine in its military needs," Bodskov told journalists at the end of the conference.
The defense ministers of Poland, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic signaled willingness to expand productions of artillery systems, munitions, and other military equipment to Ukraine, he added.
“Britain, which has already donated advanced weapons systems to Ukraine and given thousands of its troops military training…pledged an additional €300 million,” the agency reported. The British assistance is to include multiple-launch rocket systems and precision guided M31A1 missiles that can strike targets up to 80 kilometers (50 miles) away.
Ukraine has been the subject of the Russian operation since February 24. Russia says the operation is aimed at “demilitarizing” the eastern Ukrainian region of Donbas.
Back in 2014, Donetsk and its neighboring Luhansk region—which together form the Donbas—declared themselves independent republics, refusing to recognize Ukraine’s Western-backed government. The declaration of independence was ensued by a conflict between the region’s pro-Russian forces and the Ukrainian military.
Ordering the operation, Russian President Vladimir Putin said the mission was aimed at “defending people who for eight years were suffering persecution and genocide by the Kiev regime.”
Since the onset of the Russian operation, the United States and its European allies have been pouring extensive batches of advanced weapons into the ex-Soviet country.
Starting in mid-June, the United States began giving Ukraine eight units of High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS), with plans for delivering four more.
Russia has warned that the flood of weapons will only prolong the war.