President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy had previously raised alarm over Russia’s tactics of targeting energy supplies. He voiced these concerns during the Ukraine Defence Contact Group (UDCG) meeting in Brussels, where an international coalition of nations gathered to coordinate military support for Ukraine. At that time, Dutch Minister of Defence Kajsa Ollongren indicated that the Netherlands was actively working on providing additional air defence capabilities.
This Dutch initiative aligns with Germany’s recent announcement of a new aid package for Ukraine. The German assistance includes an additional Patriot launch system with missiles and two supplementary IRIS-T air defence systems. The Netherlands had previously supplied PATRIOT launchers and missiles to Ukraine, and this additional contribution is in response to the ongoing Russian conflict within Ukraine.
Minister Ollongren emphasized, “The Russian conflict in Ukraine persists, with continued assaults on both military and civilian targets, including critical energy infrastructure. With winter approaching, the defence of this infrastructure is of utmost importance. Moreover, additional support is essential to organize air defence throughout the country.”
It is worth noting that providing these additional missiles entails a substantial impact on the readiness and deployment of the Dutch armed forces. However, given the critical nature of supporting Ukraine, this risk is being acknowledged. The provided equipment comes from Dutch stockpiles, and measures are being implemented to swiftly replenish these reserves.
Earlier this week, the Netherlands also announced a new donation to Ukraine, including drones, demining equipment, and ammunition. The total value of all the delivered materials now exceeds EUR 2.1 billion.