During his visit to NATO HQ on 23 November, Ukraine’s Deputy Defence Minister Volodymyr Tereshenko signed the Implementing Agreement for the NATO/PfP Trust Fund project in Ukraine for the destruction of surplus and dangerous munitions and small arms and light weapons (SALW). The agreement paves way for the safe destruction of 15,000 tons of munitions, 400,000 small arms and 1,000 man-portable air-defence missiles (MANPADS) in Ukraine, NATO press office reports.
The US is leading the first phase of the planned 12-year demilitarization effort in Ukraine. The safe destruction of surplus and aging stockpiles provides practical support to Ukraine’s planned reforms of the armed forces, improves security for Ukraine and its neighbours and builds Ukrainian capability to tackle such problems in the future.
The project costs are estimated at EUR 7,9 million – all based on voluntary donations. Destruction work, starting with the MANPADS will begin in Ukraine at the end of November. The NATO Maintenance and Supply Agency (NAMSA) will act as the executing agent for the project. This is the second NATO/PfP Trust Fund project for Ukraine, the first project completed in May 2003 destroyed more than 400,000 anti-personnel landmines.
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