The Netherlands is prepared to pay for the delivery of Leopard 2 battle tanks to Ukraine as part of a wider coalition effort to provide Kyiv’s armed forces with modern heavy weapons, Defense Minister Kajsa Ollongren said yesterday.
“That is definitely something we would be willing to do,” the Dutch minister told Bloomberg in Davos, Switzerland, where she is attending the annual World Economic Forum meeting.
According to the defense official, the Netherlands had previously paid for Soviet T-72 tanks to be sent to Ukraine from Czechia, and is open to do the same with German-made Leopards.
On Thursday, on the sidelines of the forum, minister Ollongren met with Olena Zelenska, Ukrainian president’s wife. Mrs Zelenska thanked the Netherlands for its unwavering support in the fight against the Russian aggressors, noting that the Netherlands has become one of the leaders in providing military, financial and humanitarian assistance to Ukraine.
Olena Zelenska also expressed her gratitude for the treatment and rehabilitation of more than 60 Ukrainian servicemen and voiced hope that such assistance from the Dutch government would continue.
Fearing winter will give Russian forces time to regroup and unleash a major attack, Ukraine’s first lady said the country’s embattled military need immediate support, something that is likely to be discussed today at a meeting in the Ramstein format.
In 2023, the Dutch state budget has reserved a total of €2.5 billion to help Ukraine. Part of the funds will be used to preserve the country cultural heritage and support its cultural institutions. The Okhtyrka Museum of Local Lore, Chernihiv Youth Library, and the Bohdan and Varvara Khanenko National Museum of Art have already received significant financial assistance.