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Ukraine Defense Minister Says NATO Countries Now Shipping Arms To Kiev

The Ukraine Defense Minister has now confirmed what many have long suspected, NATO member countries are supplying the government in Kiev with weapons to kill the separatists in East Ukraine.  This poses some interesting questions given that Ukraine is not a member of NATO nor are the government in Kiev and its “volunteer” militias being particularly observant of any of the international rules of war.

According to Ukraine Defense Minister Valery Heletey, the weapons will be used to fight against both separatists and Russian forces and discussions related to the arms deliveries occurred at the NATO summit in Wales earlier this month. While NATO as an organization said it would not supply Ukraine with weapons there was no prohibition from members states doing so individually.

Earlier this month, a senior Ukrainian official said Kiev had agreed on the provision of weapons and military advisers from several members of the U.S.-led alliance. Four of the five countries named, including the United States, denied this.

“We reached agreements in closed talks, without media, about … those weapons that we currently need,” said Heletey, who said Ukraine needed weapons “that could stop Putin”.

Looks like Heletey broke some confidences possibly on purpose. In any case, the the US and other NATO members weapons could lead to destroying the already fragile ceasefire in Ukraine. Skirmishes are already breaking out in East Ukraine with six killed and 15 wounded being reported today.

The difference between numerous members of NATO supplying weapons and NATO as an organization supplying weapons is mostly symbolic. Flooding arms into a conflict zone with a tenuous peace agreement is not the act of people interested in helping calm the situation. It will further destabilize the situation, which may be by design.

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Ukraine Defense Minister Says NATO Countries Now Shipping Arms To Kiev

The Ukraine Defense Minister has now confirmed what many have long suspected, NATO member countries are supplying the government in Kiev with weapons to kill the separatists in East Ukraine.  This poses some interesting questions given that Ukraine is not a member of NATO nor are the government in Kiev and its “volunteer” militias being particularly observant of any of the international rules of war.

According to Ukraine Defense Minister Valery Heletey, the weapons will be used to fight against both separatists and Russian forces and discussions related to the arms deliveries occurred at the NATO summit in Wales earlier this month. While NATO as an organization said it would not supply Ukraine with weapons there was no prohibition from members states doing so individually.

Earlier this month, a senior Ukrainian official said Kiev had agreed on the provision of weapons and military advisers from several members of the U.S.-led alliance. Four of the five countries named, including the United States, denied this.

“We reached agreements in closed talks, without media, about … those weapons that we currently need,” said Heletey, who said Ukraine needed weapons “that could stop Putin”.

Looks like Heletey broke some confidences possibly on purpose. In any case, the the US and other NATO members weapons could lead to destroying the already fragile ceasefire in Ukraine. Skirmishes are already breaking out in East Ukraine with six killed and 15 wounded being reported today.

The difference between numerous members of NATO supplying weapons and NATO as an organization supplying weapons is mostly symbolic. Flooding arms into a conflict zone with a tenuous peace agreement is not the act of people interested in helping calm the situation. It will further destabilize the situation, which may be by design.

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Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Firedoglake.com. Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
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