Ukrainian servicemen adjust a 60mm mortar tube near the frontline in the Donetsk region
Sharjah24: According to Defense Minister Sebastien Lecornu, France will send 12 more Caesar truck-mounted howitzers and fresh air defense gear to Ukraine to help Ukraine fight off Russian invaders.
The artillery pieces, adding to 18 already delivered, would be financed from a 200-million-euro ($217-million) pot France set up to fund arms for Kyiv, Lecornu told a Paris press conference with his Ukranian counterpart Oleksiy Reznikov.
The move comes with France yet to commit to sending Leclerc main battle tanks to Ukraine, after spending weeks pressuring Berlin to supply its Leopard 2 and allow allies to re-export the German-made tanks.
Alongside other Western mobile cannons such as the German Panzerhaubitze 2000, the Caesar was credited last year with helping Ukraine strike targets deep behind Russian lines, undermining Moscow's offensive.
The truck-mounted 155mm guns can set up, fire a highly-accurate volley at ranges of up to 40 kilometres (25 miles) and shift position before the enemy can locate them and fire back.
Lecornu said the new batch of howitzers would be delivered "in the coming weeks" and had originally been ordered by Copenhagen.
Denmark has also pledged its entire existing 19-strong fleet of the French-made howitzers to the Ukrainian war effort.
"We've now reached a mass (of Caesar cannons) that cannot be overlooked," Lecornu said.