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In the midst of Russia’s hostilities, Ukrainian military are training with new British weapons

A Ukrainian service member holds a next generation light anti-tank weapon (NLAW), supplied by Britain, during drills at Ukraine's International Peacekeeping Security Centre near Yavoriv, in the Lviv region, Ukraine, January 28, 2022. REUTERS/Gleb Garanich

On Friday, Ukrainian troops dressed in fuzzy black-and-white winter camouflage practised firing anti-tank launchers supplied by Britain as part of Western attempts to assist Ukraine in defending itself against a Russian invasion.

The news: By mobilising more than 100,000 troops near its borders with Ukraine, a former Soviet republic that wants to join NATO, Russia has forced the West into talks on Moscow’s requests for new security assurances in Europe.

  • As the United Kingdom and the United States increased their armament sales to Ukraine this month, they also irritated Kyiv by returning their diplomats.
Ukrainian service members are seen during drills with next generation light anti-tank weapons (NLAW), supplied by Britain, at Ukraine’s International Peacekeeping Security Centre near Yavoriv, in the Lviv region, Ukraine, January 28, 2022. REUTERS/Gleb Garanich

What they’re saying: Earlier this month, the United Kingdom said that it will equip Ukraine with light anti-armour defensive armament systems as well as troops to conduct training. It stated that they are not strategic and are only meant to be used in self-defence.

  • “It is enough to shoot one round to completely destroy the enemy vehicle,” serviceman Zinovy Luzhansky said during the exercises at windy military training grounds in western Ukraine.
  • “It will be much easier to fight against the Russian Federation because this weapon can easily destroy any kind of enemy armoured military equipment.”
  • On Friday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy did not rule out a full-fledged war with Russia, but accused Washington and the media of instilling fear in the country’s economy while “no tanks in the streets.”
  • He responded after Russian President Vladimir Putin said the US and NATO had not met the Kremlin’s primary security concerns in the Ukraine conflict, but that Moscow was willing to continue negotiating.

In 2014, Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine and then backed separatists battling government forces in eastern Ukraine, resulting in an unsolved conflict that has killed over 15,000 people.

Ukrainian service members are seen during drills with next generation light anti-tank weapons (NLAW), supplied by Britain, at Ukraine’s International Peacekeeping Security Centre near Yavoriv, in the Lviv region, Ukraine, January 28, 2022. REUTERS/Gleb Garanich
Ukrainian service members operate 2A65 Msta-B howitzers during artillery and anti-aircraft drills near the border with Russian-annexed Crimea in the Kherson region, Ukraine, in this handout picture released January 28, 2022. Press Service of the Joint Forces Operation/Handout via REUTERS
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