Ukraine’s prime minister appeals for EU weapons and unity

Sep 4, 2022, 3:24 PM | Updated: Sep 5, 2022, 8:33 am

Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal speaks during a media conference at the end of the EU-Ukrain...

Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal speaks during a media conference at the end of the EU-Ukraine Association Council at the European Council, Brussels on Monday, Sept. 5, 2022. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo)

(AP Photo/Virginia Mayo)

BRUSSELS (AP) — Ukraine’s prime minister on Monday urged the European Union to stand firm against Russian energy “blackmail” and appealed for more weapons, including aircraft, for the war-ravaged country even as EU armament stocks run low.

“Russia wages a hybrid war in the European continent against the European Union. The gas blackmail, the oil blackmail, creation of the food crisis, migrant crisis, misinformation, cyberattacks,” Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said.

“But abandoning Ukraine alone against Russia — that would just be one of those steps for the further movement of Russia deeper into Europe. The only salvation is for Europe to be united,” he told reporters in Brussels after a meeting with senior EU officials.

The EU’s 27 member nations have been funneling weapons, ammunition and other assistance into Ukraine since Russia invaded the country on Feb. 24. The bloc has provided billions of euros in economic and refugee support. Sanctions are also gradually taking their toll on Russia’s economy, but concern is mounting that EU resolve may falter as inflation and energy prices rise.

However, Shmyhal insisted that Ukraine, which has been accepted as a candidate for future EU membership, still needs more help.

“Unfortunately, we see no signs that Russia is willing to stop the war. This is why we need more modern weapons, such as air defense, missile defense, anti-ship defense” as well as armored vehicles and aircraft, he said.

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said that “the European Union will continue supporting Ukraine, whatever threat, whatever blackmail Russia can put on us,” and that for “as long as it takes and as much as needed.”

But Borrell had warned earlier Monday that weapons stocks in the EU are running low and he urged member countries to better coordinate their spending on military materiel.

“The military stocks of most member states has been, I wouldn’t say exhausted, but depleted in a high proportion, because we have been providing a lot of capacity to the Ukrainians,” he said in a debate with European parliamentarians.

“It has to be refilled. The best way of refilling is doing that together. It will be cheaper,” he said.

At a meeting in the Czech Republic last week, EU defense ministers debated ways to better pool military materiel and resources, but also to bulk purchase ammunition and weapons like air defense systems which Ukraine continues to need.

Borrell warned Monday that if member countries keep expanding their military capabilities in the same way, “the result will be a big waste of money, because this is not a way of canceling our duplications — there are a lot of them — or filling our gaps.”

Borrell also rued what he believes was a missed opportunity for the EU to begin training the Ukrainian armed forces a year ago, many months before Russia launched its invasion more than six months ago, after several member countries requested such an operation.

“Unhappily we didn’t, and today we regret. We regret that last August we were not following this request, fulfilling this request,” he said. Had the EU responded at the time, Borrell said, “we would be in a better situation.”


Follow the AP’s coverage of the war at

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


OpenAI CEO Sam Altman speaks in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, Tuesday, June 6, 2023. Altman on T...

Associated Press

OpenAI CEO suggests international agency like UN’s nuclear watchdog could oversee AI

Artificial intelligence poses an “existential risk” to humanity, a key innovator warned during a visit to the United Arab Emirates

1 day ago

Mt. Rainier death...

Associated Press

Missing Mount Rainier climber’s body found in crevasse; he was celebrating 80th birthday

Search crews on Mount Rainier have found the body of a man matching the description of an 80-year-old solo climber reported missing

2 days ago

Washington gun restrictions...

Associated Press

Judge rejects attempt to block new Washington state gun restrictions

A federal judge on Tuesday rejected a request to block a new Washington state law banning the sale of certain semi-automatic rifles

3 days ago

FILE - A man walks past a Microsoft sign set up for the Microsoft BUILD conference, April 28, 2015,...

Associated Press

Microsoft will pay $20M to settle U.S. charges of illegally collecting children’s data

Microsoft will pay a fine of $20 million to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that it illegally collected and retained the data of children

3 days ago

FILE - OpenAI's CEO Sam Altman gestures while speaking at University College London as part of his ...

Associated Press

OpenAI boss ‘heartened’ by talks with world leaders over will to contain AI risks

OpenAI CEO Sam Altman said Monday he was encouraged by a desire shown by world leaders to contain any risks posed by the artificial intelligence technology his company and others are developing.

4 days ago

FILE - The draft of a bill that President Joe Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy of Calif., neg...

Associated Press

Debt deal imposes new work requirements for food aid and that frustrates many Democrats

Democrats are deeply conflicted about the debt ceiling deal, fearing damage has been done to safety net programs

5 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Emergency preparedness...

Emergency planning for the worst-case scenario

What would you do if you woke up in the middle of the night and heard an intruder in your kitchen? West Coast Armory North can help.

Innovative Education...

The Power of an Innovative Education

Parents and students in Washington state have the power to reimagine the K-12 educational experience through Insight School of Washington.

Medicare fraud...

If you’re on Medicare, you can help stop fraud!

Fraud costs Medicare an estimated $60 billion each year and ultimately raises the cost of health care for everyone.

Men's Health Month...

Men’s Health Month: Why It’s Important to Speak About Your Health

June is Men’s Health Month, with the goal to raise awareness about men’s health and to encourage men to speak about their health.

Internet Washington...

Major Internet Upgrade and Expansion Planned This Year in Washington State

Comcast is investing $280 million this year to offer multi-gigabit Internet speeds to more than four million locations.

Compassion International...

Brock Huard and Friends Rally Around The Fight for First Campaign

Professional athletes are teaming up to prevent infant mortality and empower women at risk in communities facing severe poverty.

Ukraine’s prime minister appeals for EU weapons and unity