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Lithuania and other European Union (EU) member nations have discussed the joint procurement of additional artillery ammunition to support the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

The discussions were held during an informal meeting of EU defence ministers in Stockholm, Sweden.

Organised between the 7-8 March, the meeting was presided by defence ministers of Poland, Lithuania, Ukraine, Sweden, and Germany, among other EU nations.

As part of the meeting, the participating officials discussed placing joint procurement orders with industry partners to provide ammunition to Ukraine.

The officials also talked about the possibility of increasing ammunition supplies from existing stockpiles to meet the Ukrainian soldiers’ needs.

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Lithuanian Defence Minister Arvydas Anušauskas said: “We need to speed up the delivery of weaponry and ammunition, and to allocate additional funds for acquiring 155mm ammunition. The size of the order has to correspond to Ukraine’s request. The additional funds must become available still in 2023.”

At the end of the meeting, three primary ammunition acquisition targets were finalised, including delivering more ammunition to Ukraine ‘at the shortest possible notice’, to support European companies, and to replenish EU member states’ military stockpiles that have been depleted by providing continuous assistance to the war-torn nation.

The initial talks will be followed by a definitive political-level decision that is expected to be finalised during a European Council meeting later this month.  

Lithuania also highlighted in a primary assessment that approximately 15 companies from across 11 member states could contribute to ammunition production under this effort.

In another development, the Nato Support Procurement Agency has confirmed the delivery of nine ambulances to Ukraine.

The ambulances were delivered after Kyiv asked the Nato Euro-Atlantic Disaster Response Coordination Centre to provide this support.

Additional medical vehicles will be used for providing basic life support treatments and initial aid to critical and non-critical patients.