Sweden on Thursday, January 19, pledged to send its Archer artillery system, a modern mobile howitzer requested by Kyiv for months, to Ukraine along with armored vehicles and anti-tank missiles.
Speaking at a press conference, Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson said his government had agreed on a three-part military support package for Ukraine, including “the first decision on starting deliveries of the artillery system Archer to Ukraine.”
Sweden, which has broken with its doctrine of not delivering weapons to a country at war, will also send 50 CV-90 armored vehicles and NLAW portable anti-tank missiles, the government said.
“Military support is decisive,” Kristersson said, as “it can change who retakes the initiative this winter” on the front in Ukraine.
The domestically developed Archer artillery system is composed of a fully-automated howitzer mounted on an all-terrain vehicle, which allows the gun to be remotely operated by the crew sitting in the armored cab.
Thursday’s decision meant the Swedish Armed Forces would be given the task to “make the preparations to begin delivery of the artillery system Archer to Ukraine.”
Defence Minister Pal Jonson said the government had also asked the armed forces to come back with a recommendation on how many of the Archers currently in storage could be sent.
UK and Denmark follow suit
Their announcement on Thursday was followed by Britain promising to send 600 Brimstone missiles to war-torn Ukraine to help its fight against Russian forces. British Defense Minister Ben Wallace released these details on Thursday.
“Today I can say we’re also going to send another 600 Brimstone missiles into theatre, which will be incredibly important in helping Ukraine dominate the battlefield,” he told reporters at Estonia’s Tapa military base.
Denmark also revealed on Thursday it would donate 19 French-made Caesar howitzers to Ukraine, including some still on order, following a slew of pledges of heavy weapons from Kyiv’s Western allies.
“We have been in constant contact with the Ukrainians about the Caesar artillery, and I am pleased that we have now received broad support from parliament to donate it to Ukraine’s freedom struggle,” Danish Defence Minister Jakob Ellemann-Jensen said.
featured image: Picture taken on October 14, 2017 shows the Swedish Defense Forces’ artillery piece Archer displayed in connection with an exercise during the Aurora 17 defense exercise in Sweden.
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