Several NATO countries are considering whether to supply Ukraine with long-range missiles. Such missiles could reach military targets in Russia and Crimea, and could give Ukraine control over large parts of the Black Sea.
NATO countries and Ukraine will meet on Wednesday in Brussels. There they will discuss the war situation and consider new countermeasures after Russia attacked Ukraine with a wave of missiles and drones in the two weeks after the Christmas holiday.
“Once again, Russia has tried to bring Ukraine to its knees with a major attack from the air, with 500 missiles and attack drones, in an attempt to overload our air defense and destroy vital infrastructure,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said via video link. Swedish Security Conference on Sunday afternoon.
Ukraine requested an urgent meeting of the NATO-Ukraine Council on Wednesday. The meeting brings together ambassadors of NATO countries, and will be chaired by Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg.
The Ukrainian offensive in 2023 did not succeed in penetrating the 1,000-kilometre-long front line. According to VG information, NATO countries are now discussing how they can help Ukraine with heavier and longer-range weapons.
Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has asked NATO countries to provide Ukraine with supplies as quickly as possible. He is asking for more air defense, ammunition, combat drones and Missiles with a range of more than 300 kilometers.
Since this summer, Britain has donated Storm Shadow missiles to Ukraine. Its range is about 250 km. The British set a condition that the missiles should not be launched at targets inside Russia, but rather used only within the borders of Ukraine.
Some military success
Norwegian Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide (AFP) believes it is smart for Ukraine to try to achieve a breakthrough in the war by attacking Russian forces more forcefully in the Black Sea and Crimea.
He acknowledges that it is very difficult for Ukrainian forces to penetrate Russian defense lines in eastern Ukraine.
If there had been a mobile front, Ukraine would have had a huge advantage with Western weapons and much better coordination between infantry and artillery. With a static line where both sides dug themselves into trenches with heavy defensive work, this advantage was eliminated, Eddie tells VG.
– Therefore, it seems that Ukraine is now trying to gain an advantage at sea, where it is difficult to maintain a permanent front line. If Ukraine manages to sever the relationship between Russia and Crimea, this will weaken Russia's control over the Black Sea.
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The Norwegian Foreign Minister believes that Ukraine has achieved some military success in the Black Sea already:
-Ukraine was able to export grain by sailing west into the Black Sea. It brings income to the country and is therefore also a military success.
According to Volodymyr Zelensky, at least 500 merchant ships have used this western route from Ukraine and through the Black Sea in recent months.
British donations stopped
According to British intelligence, Ukraine managed to do this Destroying 20% of the Russian fleet in the Black Sea With missile and drone attacks. Turkey effectively prevents Russia from bringing other ships into the Black Sea from the Northern Fleet or from the Baltic Sea through the Bosphorus Strait.
Turkey does this on the basis of an international agreement that gives the country the right to stop military ships belonging to the warring parties.
But Türkiye's position also affects the coalition supporting Ukraine:
Great Britain and Norway announced last December that they… It will help Ukraine build a modern naval defense. Part of this package was for the British to donate two minesweepers to Ukraine.
But the NATO country Türkiye will not allow That the two warships sail to the Black Sea. The logic is the same as they used to refuse Russian warships to sail through the Bosphorus Strait.
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