Bulgaria will try to sell ammunition to Ukraine directly, and not through intermediaries, as was done before, Defence Minister Todor Tagarev told a briefing on June 27.
However, the Ministry of Defence and the Ministry of Economy will clarify how and whether this can be done.
Tagarev gave the briefing a day after the government information service announced that on June 23, the Cabinet had decided to supply military aid to Ukraine.
He told the June 27 briefing that because of the policy imposed under previous governments, the supply of weaponry had taken place “semi-secretly”, which meant there had to be intermediaries.
The supply of weaponry to Ukraine after Russia’s February 2022 illegal invasion began under the government of the time headed by Kirl Petkov. However, Bulgarian Socialist Party leader Kornelia Ninova, Economy Minister in that coalition government, insisted that “not a single cartridge” was going to Ukraine.
Tagarev said that as with previous supplies of military aid, the current list was confidential, but did not include aircraft or heavy armoured vehicles.
He said that one of the priorities of the Defence Ministry was military aid to Ukraine.
“Help for Ukraine – because this is the way we can permanently guarantee stability in the region and a better security environment, and not have to allocate much more money than what we have the consent of the political forces,” he said.
Tagarev said that the norms for maintaining stocks for a crisis situation and the possibility for normal combat military training would be maintained.
Responding to a question, he said that only children who do not watch television did not understand that Bulgaria was exporting ammunition to Ukraine.
Tagarev confirmed that the Cabinet was working on the issue of joining the EU initiative for the production of 155mm projectiles.
“This is extremely important because the Army has plans to move to this Nato artillery standard. This will contribute to our defence industry maintaining its high competitiveness of small and light munitions,” he said.
The late 2022 decision by the National Assembly on providing weaponry to Ukraine did not set a limit on the tranches, Tagarev said.
“The war continues. Ukraine needs international support. Without it, it is not known what will happen,” he said.
(Photo: Ministry of Defence)
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