The British Royal Navy are helping train Ukrainian sailors, teaching them advanced skills in the waters of Scotland, to further contribute towards Ukraine’s defence against Russia.
For security reasons, the exact location has not been revealed, but yesterday, Ukrainian Deputy Defence minister Volodymr Havrylov visited Scotland to meet with UK Armed Forces Minister James Heappey and to observe the training himself.
Havrylov and Heappey watched Ukrainian recruits learning weapon drills, the operation of machinery onboard navy vessels, and advanced damage control methods.
“I saw the brotherhood of Ukrainian and British soldiers working together to achieve a common goal – strengthening the combat capabilities of the Ukrainian army,” said Havrylov.
“We are very grateful to the government and people of the United Kingdom for their invaluable contribution to Ukraine’s success in repelling the Russian aggressors.”
Speaking to the BBC Scotland, a Royal Navy mine hunter captain involved in the training said it was “a privilege to be working with his Ukrainian counterparts”.
“It’s clearly a very difficult situation in Ukraine at the moment. We all understand the urgency of the task at hand. So, it’s a professional privilege to be working with the Ukrainian navy, who are incredibly focused on getting the job done. And that’s motivating for my team to be able to give them the best training we possibly can,” he added.
Over 1,000 UK Armed Forces personnel are involved in the scheme to train the Ukrainian navy, which witnessed heavy losses at the start of Russia’s invasion, particularly in the Black Sea.
In addition to naval training, the UK’s Ministry of Defence said it would also give volunteer Ukrainian recruits with limited military experience the advanced skills to be effective in frontline combat.
“Based on the UK’s basic soldier training, the course covers weapons handling, battlefield first aid, fieldcraft, patrol tactics and the law of armed conflict,” they said in a statement to the BBC.
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