Government announces nearly $26 million of support for Ukraine as war enters third year

The Government has announced further support of nearly $26 million for Ukraine to mark the second anniversary of the war.

Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Judith Collins marked the occasion by announcing further support and sanctions and extending New Zealand's military assistance.

The new package of support is worth $25.9 million and brings New Zealand's total support over the last two years to more than $100 million.

"It demonstrates New Zealand's unwavering support for Ukraine and our serious commitment to defending an international rules-based system that reflects our values and supports our interests," Peters said.

He added New Zealand is continuing to stand with Ukraine as the war has impacted global stability and come at a huge cost to human lives.

"Russia launched its illegal, full-scale invasion of Ukraine, in blatant violation of international law, including the UN Charter," Peters said.

"The war has had a horrific human cost, caused immense suffering and has significantly impacted regional and global stability. That is why New Zealand remains committed to standing with Ukraine."

During the past two years, New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel have been on the ground in Europe and the UK helping train and support Ukrainian troops, and the Government has announced that support will continue.

"The Government is pleased to announce NZDF's meaningful, visible and highly credible deployment of skilled personnel in support of Ukraine will extend until June 2025," Collins said.

"Up to 97 NZDF personnel will continue to train Ukrainian soldiers and provide intelligence, liaison and logistics support."

On top of the extension of the NZDF deployment, the Government has also announced the package will include $6.5 million to the United Kingdom - for Ukraine to procure weapons and ammunition for Ukraine.

It will also include $7 million in humanitarian assistance to support Ukrainians affected by the war, including those who have been displaced to neighbouring countries.

To achieve this, Aotearoa will partner with international humanitarian agencies and New Zealand humanitarian NGOs to deliver this support.

A further $3 million will also be given to the World Bank's Ukraine Relief, Recovery, Reconstruction and Reform Trust Fund.

The Government has also announced new sanctions are being worked on under the Russia Sanctions Act 2022, focussed on countering sanctions evasion.

"It is critical Ukraine knows the international community stands by it, and that Russia understands that countries such as New Zealand support Ukraine's self-defence. This package demonstrates our commitment to this," Collins said.