EU to consider military training for Ukrainian soldiers, Borrell says

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The EU will discuss the potential launch of a major training operation for Ukrainian forces in nearby nations, the bloc’s chief diplomat Josep Borrell said on Monday (22 August).

The proposal is set to be “discussed politically” next week when EU defence ministers gather for an informal meeting in Prague, Borrell told reporters on the sidelines of a forum in Santander, Spain.

“It seems reasonable that a war that is lasting and looks set to last requires an effort not only in terms of supplies of material but also training and help to organise the army,” Borrell said.

He, however, did not go into detail about what the mission could entail in practice.

“I hope it will be approved,” he said, adding that “of course, it would be a big mission”.

Asked where the training of Ukrainian forces would be conducted, Borrell said “it will not be in Ukraine, but in neighbouring countries which already have training missions”, naming Poland, the Czech Republic, the United Kingdom and  France.

“When we provide arms, these are quite sophisticated, and they have to be used – and in order to be used, they require quite an important training,” he said, adding: “But we are not going to do that in Ukrainian territory”.

As early as last autumn, the EU was reported to be considering an independent training program called the EU Military Advisory and Training Mission Ukraine (EUATM).

via Euractiv

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