Credit: Hele-Mai Kulleste, Delfi Estonia

Why Europe is failing to provide Ukraine with sufficient ammunition

By Lennart Hofman, Laurens Groeneveld, Ludo Hekman, Iliés Hagoug, Oliver Kund, Anna Myroniuk, Pol Pareja | 10 July, 2023

Since the February 2022 invasion, Ukraine’s five main military partners alone (US, Germany, UK, Poland, and the Netherlands) pledged more than 60 billion euros worth of weapons. Deliveries that punched deep holes in the ammunition stocks of NATO countries. The stockpiles remain empty.

To find out how this is possible, a collective of investigative journalists spoke with dozens of insiders over the past few months: diplomats who were present at crucial moments in Brussels’ back rooms, military personnel who gave early warnings of shortages, arms manufacturers who can no longer cope with the demand, and soldiers on the front lines in Ukraine – the men and women who have to fight despite the lack of sufficient weapons.

A reconstruction based on their experiences exposes the weaknesses in Europe’s defense: a wait-and-see arms industry that refuses to take financial risks, national interests that frustrate quick decision-making, and a multitude of procedures and standards that get in the way of effective use of munitions.

This investigation was done by The Investigative Desk and Lighthouse Reports in cooperation with Delfi Estonia, The Kyiv Independent and El Diario.

This publication was supported by a grant from the Investigative Journalism for Europe (IJ4EU) and Journalismfund Europe.

Read the full story on FTM (in English), Delfi Estonia (in Estonian), The Kiev Independent (in English) or El Diario (in Spanish). 

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