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UK to send 14 Challenger 2 tanks to Ukraine in weeks ahead – Downing Street

About 30 large AS90 self-propelled howitzers are expected to follow

LONDON, January 15. /TASS/. Great Britain will deliver 14 Challenger 2 tanks to Ukraine and accelerate its diplomatic activity in the world with a view to encouraging allies to ramp up weapons supplies to Kiev in the next few weeks.

"Sending Challenger 2 tanks to Ukraine is the start of a gear change in the UK’s support. A squadron of 14 tanks will go into the country in the coming weeks after the Prime Minister [Rishi Sunak] told [Ukrainian] President [Vladimir] Zelensky that the UK would provide additional support to aid Ukraine’s land war," according to the British government’s strategy on Ukraine published on Sunday night. "Around 30 AS90s, which are large, self-propelled guns, operated by five gunners, are expected to follow. The Defense Secretary will set out further details of this support in the House of Commons tomorrow (Monday)," the government said in a press release.

"The UK will begin training the Ukrainian Armed Forces to use the tanks and guns in the coming days," the press release reads.

Britain said the PM had identified a "window" where Ukrainian forces can be more effective. Toward this goal, London announced "a flurry of UK diplomatic activity" next week to secure allies’ military assistance to Kiev. The kingdom’s Foreign Secretary James Cleverly will visit the United States and Canada, while Defense Secretary Ben Wallace will travel to Germany and Estonia.

"The Prime Minister is therefore encouraging allies to deploy [to Kiev] their planned support for 2023 as soon as possible to have maximum impact," Downing Street added.