Sydney, Australia, Mar 21 (EFE).- New Zealand is to send non-lethal military aid to support Ukraine against Russia’s invasion, in the first initiative of its kind for the country, its prime minister announced on Monday.
This aid, which amounts to NZ$5 million ($3.45 million) and will mainly be channeled through NATO, will be used to purchase fuel, military rations, communications and military first aid kits.
“This is the first time New Zealand has provided direct funding to a third party organization for non-lethal military assistance of this kind, and underscores the importance of rejecting any actions which have adverse consequences for state sovereignty, and that we must defend in every way we can,” Jacinda Ardern said.
Wellington will also send Ukraine equipment currently held by its armed forces, including more than 1,000 body armor plates, some 480 helmets and around 470 camouflage vests, at the request by the government of President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
The New Zealand contribution since the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine amounts to a total of NZ$11 million.
Monday’s announcement comes after the Wellington announced on Friday that it will apply sanctions against 19 Russian entities and more than 360 people, including Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, after a new law came into force that allows the country to impose selective sanctions.
Until the passing of the Russia Sanctions Act, presented last week in parliament, New Zealand legislation only allowed sanctions to be implemented when imposed by the United Nations Security Council, where Russia has the right to veto.
On Feb. 25, New Zealand announced the imposition of sanctions, as well as the indefinite suspension of bilateral ministerial consultations. EFE