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Germany Approves $769m Weapons Package for Ukraine, Clears Huge Boxer Deal With Australia

 As NATO debates the future for Ukraine, Germany has vowed to surge weapons supplies to Kyiv after signing off on a €700 million ($769 million) military aid package covering air defense equipment, infantry fighting vehicles, main battle tanks and artillery ammunition.

Announced by German defense minister Boris Pistorius on the opening day of the NATO Heads of State Summit, the new package includes two US-made but German-owned Patriot air defense launchers, 40 more Marder infantry fighting vehicles, an additional 25 Leopard 1A5 main battle tanks, five recovery tanks and 20,000 rounds of artillery ammunition. An “extensive package” of anti-drone capabilities and a Luna intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) drones have also been included, according to a German Ministry of Defense statement.

In total, the ministry said, 31 items will be sent to Ukraine from either German Armed Forces stocks or industrial partners.

“It’s another huge package [for Ukraine] and altogether, until 2027, we will spend more than €17 billion ($18.7 billion),” said Pistorius at the NATO Summit. “We are proceeding [with additional funding] because we are convinced it is necessary and the only right thing to do is support Ukraine for as long as it takes.”

Though considerable, the latest arms package falls way short of the country’s largest military aid contribution to Kyiv of €2.7 billion ($2.95 billion) announced in May and which covered 200 reconnaissance drones, 30 Leopard 1A5 tanks, 20 Marder armored personnel carriers, over 100 combat vehicles, 18 self-propelled Howitzers and four IRIS-T SLM medium range air defense systems.

The new funding for Ukraine arrives just a day after Berlin brokered a formal “in-principle” agreement with Australia for more than 100 Boxer armored vehicles, according to Reuters. Other reports value the deal at approximately $661 million. The agreement falls under the German Army’s schwerer Waffenträger Infanterie (heavy weapon carrier infantry) program, designed to source a successor for Wiesel (weasel) vehicles.

Negotiations on the deal between the German and Australian governments, as well as vehicle-maker Rheinmetall, originally started in April 2023 “to establish appropriate legal and commercial arrangements,” according to the manufacturer.

Boxer production for Germany, which is based on the Australian Army’s Combat Reconnaissance Vehicle (CRV) variant, will take place in Queensland, Australia. Fitted with a MK30-2 ABM automatic cannon as its main armament, the CRV version also features a two-man Lance turret and a reconnaissance mission module, according to Rheinmetall.

The manufacturer said previously that deliveries to Germany would take place from 2025 on.

Source : Breakingdefense

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