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June 28, 2022

New Zealand announces additional military and legal aid for Ukraine

The government is contributing a further $4.5m through the Nato Trust Fund for non-lethal military supplies.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has announced additional funding for military supplies and equipment to arm Ukraine in its fight against Russian aggression.

Ardern is currently in Madrid to attend a Nato summit and plans to discuss the future course of the war, and additional humanitarian needs to support Ukrainians.

She said: “New Zealand’s contribution has been significant and meaningful.

“We are also contributing a further $4.5m via the Nato Trust Fund for priority, non-lethal military supplies. This includes items like military first aid kits, fuel, communications equipment, and rations.”

The latest contribution is in addition to the $4.24m to the Nato fund announced in March.

Ardern added: “It is on top of extensive assistance already provided across the diplomatic, humanitarian, legal, and military aspects of the conflict, which total more than $33m of assistance to date.”

The New Zealand Government also intends to back efforts to ensure legal accountability for war crimes.  

NZ Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta said: “The use of force to change borders is strictly prohibited under international law, as is the deliberate targeting of civilians.

“We support international efforts to investigate this and hold war criminals to account. Further financial support of $1m will go to the work of the International Criminal Court (ICC).”

The funds will be directed to the ICC Trust Fund for Victims and the ICC Office of the Prosecutor.

The government has extended the deployment of six New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) intelligence analysts in the UK, four NZDF logistics specialists in Germany, and two NZDF liaison officers in Belgium.

Six more NZDF intelligence analysts will be deployed to the UK for five months, and an additional liaison officer will be stationed in Germany for two months.

Mahuta added: “New Zealand will also support the ICC’s investigative efforts through the secondment of an NZDF senior officer.”

The latest military and legal support package, worth more than $8m, will be funded from the existing Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and NZDF budgets.

The deployment of the Royal New Zealand Air Force C-130H aircraft and crew ended this month.

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