France Says to Train Up to 2,000 Ukrainian Soldiers

France will train up to 2,000 Ukrainian soldiers on its territory, Minister for the Armed Forces Sebastien Lecornu told Le Parisien newspaper in an interview on Saturday.

The soldiers will “be taken into our units for several weeks,” he said, adding that there would be three levels of training: general combat, “specific needs outlined by the Ukrainians such as logistics” and then training on how to use defense material furnished by Ukraine’s Western allies.

He said this would be done respecting rules, adding: “It will not be in a belligerent fashion because we are not at war. We are helping a country that is at war” with Russia.

France will also provide Ukraine with Crotale air defense systems, he said, without specifying how many.

The number is being “defined with the Ukrainians” he said, adding that it “will be significant to allow them to defend their skies.”

The minister said six more Caesar mobile artillery units could be supplied to Kyiv on top of the 18 already furnished, while the possibility of donating surface-to-surface missiles was also being looked into.

The Caesar can accurately strike targets more than 40 kilometers (25 miles) away.

French President Emmanuel Macron on Wednesday said Paris would deliver radars, systems, and missiles to Ukraine.

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