The foreign ministers of the EU states want to decide on the start of a training mission for Ukrainian armed forces at a meeting in Brussels this Monday.
The plans for the mission that have been drawn up over the past few weeks envisage that around 15,000 Ukrainian soldiers will initially be trained in Germany, Poland and other EU countries. The EU wants to help ensure that the Ukrainian troops can defend themselves even better than before against the attackers from Russia.
As part of the EU mission, the Bundeswehr is planning combat training for companies and tactical exercises for a brigade staff and the subordinate battalion staffs. In addition, there will be training for trainers, medical training and weapon system training in close cooperation with industry. A brigade with up to 5,000 Ukrainian soldiers could be trained in Germany in the coming months. According to information from EU circles, the federal government has promised to fill 80 posts for the mission during the deployment planning.
Developments in Iran are an issue
Another topic of the meeting in Brussels will be the latest developments in Iran. In view of the serious violations of human rights, the foreign ministers want to decide on a new package of sanctions. Specifically, 31 people and institutions are said to be affected by the punitive measures - including, for example, high-ranking representatives of the police and the Basij militias. They provide for entry bans to be issued and assets held in the EU to be frozen.
The background to the sanctions is the brutal suppression of protests after the death of 22-year-old Iranian Mahsa Amini. The vice squad arrested the young woman on September 13 for allegedly violating Islamic dress codes. Amini then died in police custody on September 16.
Kuleba switched on via video
For Germany, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens) is expected to attend the consultations in Brussels. The Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba is said to be temporarily connected via video conference and report on the current situation in his country.
On the fringes of the meeting, the ministers also want to exchange ideas with the Belarusian opposition leader Svetlana Tichanovskaya over a working breakfast. The focus is likely to be the question of what further measures the EU can take against the leadership of the ex-Soviet Republic of Belarus. Under ruler Alexander Lukashenko, serious human rights violations have been committed in the country for a long time. In addition, the leadership of Belarus is accused of supporting the Russian war of aggression against neighboring Ukraine.