EU Expected To Sign Security Agreement With Ukraine

This comes as Madrid has delivered a second shipment to Kiev of anti-aircraft missiles for the Patriot air defense systems

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is expected to sign a security pact with the European Union on Thursday; a draft of the agreement has already been viewed by Reuters. For years into the future, it pledges the bloc will continue delivering weapons and other aid. Washington, London, Paris and Berlin have inked similar pacts with Kiev.

Reuters reports the deal, to be sealed tomorrow, outlines the bloc’s commitment to assist Kiev in nine areas of defense and security policy such as defense industry cooperation, military training, arms shipments, and demining. The signing will take place at an EU leaders’ summit in Brussels, diplomats said.

If “future aggression” occurs, the document stipulates the EU will consult with Kiev within a day’s time to assess Ukraine’s needs and “swiftly determine” next steps per the commitments. Officials explained this is not a mutual defense pact but rather constitutes pledges, which will remain intact “as Ukraine pursues its European path,” to furnish Kiev with weapons and other assistance it requires to deter any future invasion. It will be reviewed within, at most, a decade.

The outlet notes the draft is light on details regarding the value or quantity of the future aid, but points to the EU’s agreement to contribute over $5 billion to a fund for Ukraine’s weapons needs this year. Though the bloc has not issued similar guarantees for funding during the coming years, the draft says “further comparable annual increases could be envisaged until 2027.”

In addition to sending Ukraine well over a billion dollars’ worth of weapons using interest gained from stolen Russian assets – a major escalation in the economic war against Moscow – the bloc imposed a plethora of sanctions on dozens of Russian entities and individuals accused of supporting the Kremlin’s war effort this week. It also targeted some organizations in India, Turkey, and China accused of similar charges.

Concurrently, Spain has announced the delivery of another shipment of anti-aircraft missiles for Ukraine’s NATO-supplied Patriot air defense systems. The first such transfer occurred this April. Government sources told the newspaper El Mundo that the missiles which arrived last Friday are for the surface-to-air missile (SAM) system.

Given battlefield realities, Kiev has no realistic hope of defeating Moscow or repelling its advances and is instead increasingly escalating the war with dangerous strikes against Russian territory which risk vastly expanding the conflict.

Ukraine’s frontline troops, cities, and infrastructure have been getting pummeled by Russian ballistic missiles, drones, and bombs. Zelensky has pleaded with NATO members, who are using his nation as a proxy in its war with Russia, to send more Patriot air defenses without much luck. According to the Financial Times, Kiev currently holds two Patriot systems provided by the US, Germany, and the Netherlands, with four more on order. Zelensky says his forces need at least seven Patriot systems but should have 25 with six to eight batteries each “to protect Ukraine completely.”

President Joe Biden approved the delivery of a Patriot system to Ukraine this month, while Romania has also pledged at least one more. Each system costs about $1 billion and every interceptor carries a $4 million price tag. The White House recently informed its allies that their shipments of air defense missiles will be delayed for more than a year as Kiev is being prioritized.

The US is reportedly preparing to announce another $150 million weapons package for Ukraine this week, including munitions for the High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), anti-armor weapons, artillery shells, and grenades. This comes as Kiev is stepping up its attacks with US and NATO supplied long-range missiles into the Russian mainland as well as the Crimean Peninsula, which often provoke massive retaliation against Ukrainian infrastructure and energy.

Connor Freeman is the assistant editor and a writer at the Libertarian Institute, primarily covering foreign policy. He is a co-host on the Conflicts of Interest podcast. His writing has been featured in media outlets such as, Counterpunch, and the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity. He has also appeared on Liberty Weekly, Around the Empire, and Parallax Views. You can follow him on Twitter @FreemansMind96.