Thousands of Ukrainian soldiers undergo French military training before being sent to the front

Ukraine’s allies are continuing apace with combat-training programs that have prepared many tens of thousands of Ukrainians for battle on the front lines against Russia.

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Ukrainian forces are undergoing rigorous training at a French military base before deployment to the front lines. This intensive four-week program aims to prepare them for a second winter defending their country against the ongoing Russian invasion.

As part of a European Union military assistance mission initiated a year ago, France is committed to training 7,000 Ukrainian soldiers this year. In a significant development, the United Kingdom has also conducted a training program for 30,000 Ukrainian soldiers over the past 17 months, a practice not seen in the UK since World War II.

Lieutenant-colonel Even, the head of the operational military partnerships detachment, emphasised France’s role: “France’s role in these training programs is precisely to provide training in the use of the weapons and equipment that are transferred. But that’s not all. It also means sharing our Western doctrine.”

Facing a frozen front line in the conflict, Ukraine is actively working to refine its tactics and manoeuvring strategies to overcome Russian defences. 

During trench exercises supervised by a French soldier, Capitaine Michel highlighted the importance of teaching partner troops how to manoeuvre effectively, approach objectives, and avoid fratricidal fire, particularly in complex terrain with a network of trenches.

Simultaneously, President Zelenskyy has issued a warning to Ukrainians to prepare for a potential Russian assault on the nation’s energy infrastructure. Citing previous incidents from last winter where persistent attacks on the power grid left hundreds of thousands without heating or electricity during the coldest months of the year.