Aotearoa New Zealand is providing further support to Ukraine and its self-defence in the face of Russia’s unprovoked and unjustified invasion, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today.
“Russia’s continued assault on Ukraine is a blatant attack on innocent lives and the sovereignty of another country. Our response has not only included the condemnation of Russia’s actions, but practical support for Ukraine,” Jacinda Ardern said.
“Today’s announcement involves a broad package of measures such as funding for military supplies and equipment, backing for international efforts to ensure legal accountability, including for war crimes and crimes against humanity, and extensions and enhancements of NZDF deployments.
“It is on top of extensive assistance already provided across the diplomatic, humanitarian, legal and military aspects of the conflict which total more than $33 million of assistance to date. Trade and economic sanctions have also limited Russia’s ability to finance and equip the war.
“New Zealand’s contribution has been significant and meaningful. While in Madrid I intend to discuss the future trajectory of the war, and what additional humanitarian needs we can expect.
“We are also contributing a further $4.5 million via the NATO Trust Fund for priority non-lethal military supplies. This includes items like military first aid kits, fuel, communications equipment and rations. This is on top of $4.24 million to the NATO fund announced in March,” Jacinda Ardern said.
“Russia’s aggression against Ukraine is a grave breach of international rules. The use of force to change borders is strictly prohibited under international law, as is the deliberate targeting of civilians,” Nanaia Mahuta said.
“We support international efforts to investigate this and hold war criminals to account. Further financial support of $1 million will go to the work of the ICC. This will be directed to the ICC Trust Fund for Victims, and the ICC Office of the Prosecutor. New Zealand will also support the ICC’s investigative efforts through the secondment of a NZDF senior officer.
“International efforts to hold people criminally accountable for war crimes and crimes against humanity through the ICC is a priority for Ukraine over the long-term,” Nanaia Mahuta said.
“The Government is extending and enhancing NZDF deployments to the UK and Europe for intelligence, liaison and logistics support, as part of international efforts to support Ukraine’s self-defence,” Peeni Henare said.
“The Defence Force personnel deployed over recent months have provided a welcome and practical contribution that is valued by our partners. In response to requests, we are increasing our intelligence contributions to support international efforts,” Peeni Henare said.
The changes to NZDF’s deployments include:
- Extending the deployment of six NZDF intelligence analysts to the UK, and the use of the New Zealand-based open-source intelligence capability to support partner intelligence requirements, by five months to 30 November.
- A further six NZDF intelligence analysts deployed to the UK till 30 November.
- Extending the deployment of four NZDF logistics specialists in Germany by two months till 31 August.
- Extending the deployment of two NZDF liaison officers to Belgium and the UK by five months till 30 November, and deploying an additional liaison officer to Germany for two months.
The deployment of the Royal New Zealand Air Force C-130H transport aircraft and crew concluded this month, with the aircraft arriving back in New Zealand yesterday. It will undergo planned maintenance to be ready and available for national tasking leading into the Pacific cyclone season. During its deployment, crew on the Hercules carried out 62 flights transporting 256,000 kg of military aid. The deployment of personnel to train Ukrainian service personnel on the L119 Light Gun in the UK is scheduled to be completed shortly, with personnel returning next month.
Today’s package of military, diplomatic and legal support for Ukraine is estimated to be worth up to $8 million and will be funded from within existing MFAT and NZDF budgets.