Date: 27 April 2022 Author: Jan Hernik
Australia is sending another tranche of military support to Ukraine
Since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, Australia has fulfilled its allied commitment by unequivocally standing on the side of the Free World states. Despite the distance that separates Oceania from the region of Central and Eastern Europe, the Scott Morrison government has decided to send another tranche of military support to Ukraine, which is fighting against Russian aggression.
Since the beginning of the third month of war in Ukraine, Australia has provided military support to Ukraine totaling $ 225 million, and a further $ 65 million has been allocated to humanitarian aid along with over 70,000 tons of steam coal.
On April 27, Scott Morrison announced another shipment of military equipment totaling $ 26.5 million. The latest support mainly includes rockets and anti-tank missiles, as well as 20 modernized Bushmaster vehicles, which will depart Brisbane for Ukraine aboard a Boeing C-17 Globemaster before the end of the month.
The next package of support offered by the government in Canberra was announced in parallel with the participation of the Australian delegation at a meeting at the US military base Ramstein in Germany, where US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin invited representatives of 40 countries supporting Ukraine.
Ukraine was also supported by New Zealand, which sent the Royal New Zealand Armed Forces C-130H aircraft to the area covered by military kinetic operations, with support including helmets, bulletproof vests and radio equipment. From April 25, New Zealand’s sanctions will also include a 35% tariff on Russian products such as vodka and fertilizers.
New Zealand is also allocating an additional $ 9 million to support Ukraine, including $ 5 million for weapons and ammunition bought by Britain. About $ 2.8 million will go to commercial satellite access, giving Ukrainian officials near real-time information so they can respond to Russian battlefield movements. And $ 342,000 is to be allocated to efforts in the International Court of Justice and the International Criminal Court to support the case against Russia. This means that New Zealand’s contribution to Ukraine will total $ 20 million.
As pointed out by the Ukrainian ambassador to Australia, Vasyl Myroshnichenko, the demand of the Ukrainian army for ammunition and weapons is still growing. He also added that Russian aggression could lead to a domino effect in other countries, including the Indo-Pacific region.
The words of the Ukrainian ambassador gain additional credibility in the face of the pact between the People’s Republic of China and the Solomon Islands, located less than 2,000 kilometers off the coast of Australia.
The agreement concluded by the Beijing administration with representatives of the island state north-east of Australia provides for, for example, the possibility of Beijing sending forces to “help maintain social order”. This aroused a legitimate response from the United States and the Australian government.
According to “The Guardian”, US Deputy Secretary of State for East Asia and the Pacific, Daniel Kritenbrink, said the Beijing-Honiara deal had “potential implications for regional security” for the US and other allies. Kritenbrink also did not rule out military action by the American side in the event of actions aimed at establishing military bases of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army in the Solomon Islands area. On the Australian side, the strongest position was taken by Defense Minister Peter Dutton, who said that in the face of the latest reports from the Solomon Islands, “Australia should prepare for the war”.
The Ukrainian administration is well aware of the threats that are increasingly posed by communist China in the Indo-Pacific region. For this reason, it sensitizes Australians to the situation of Ukrainians, who are attacked by a direct ally of the Xi Jinping regime.
Scott Morrison’s government sees not only the threat from the People’s Republic of China, but also understands the importance of subsequent tranches of support for Ukraine as part of the broad Free World coalition led by Australia’s main ally and security provider in the Pacific region – the United States.
Direct involvement in the ever wider spectrum of Ukraine’s military support is therefore an indirect investment by Australia in its own allied image and in building its position in the event of Canberra’s potential need for similar assistance in the event of a conflict with China.
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