Day 586: Ukraine, allies move toward joint weapons production in Ukraine

Zelenskyi visits troops in the eastern frontline areas of Kupyansk-Lyman. EU cannot keep on giving weapons to Ukraine from its own stockpiles without endangering its own security, Politico says. France and Ukraine will jointly produce Aarok drones in Ukraine.

Zelenskyi visits frontline troops in Kupyansk-Lyman direction

On Tuesday, October 3, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyi visited the eastern frontline areas of Kupyansk-Lyman where some of the fiercest battles are taking place. The 103rd Territorial Defense Brigade, the 68th Oleksa Dovbush Jaeger Brigade, and the 25th Sicheslav Airborne Brigade are fighting in the area, Zelenskyi said in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter.

Spokesperson for the Ukrainian Eastern Group of Forces, Captain Illya Yevlash said in late August that Russia had amassed around 110,000 troops in the Kupyansk-Lyman direction.

He later explained that Russian forces want to break through Ukrainian defensive lines and establish a corridor near Novoyehorivka in Luhansk region in an attempt to divert Ukrainian troops. 

On September 30, Yevlash said that Russia renewed offensive operations in the Kupyansk-Lyman direction.

EU cannot keep on giving weapons to Ukraine from its own stockpiles without endangering its own security, Politico says

Ukraine looks into expanding joint weapons production deals with Western companies as its allies are running out of weapons they can send to Ukraine without endangering their own security, Politico said, quoting sources who requested anonymity. 

In a hotel conference room in Kyiv late last week, Ukrainian leaders huddled with hundreds of defense industry officials and policymakers from allied countries [during the International Industries Defense Forum]. The message was clear: Ukraine is open for business.

But the stakes were different for this conference, as Ukraine “finds its supporters running out of weapons to send” while others are “increasingly wary of committing more money to the conflict,” Politico said.

After 18 months of intense, industrial-scale combat, European stockpiles are running dry, though hope is rising that countries can work together to find more solutions, one Biden administration official said.

“What would concern us is if our partners weren’t doing something about it. But there is eagerness all over the globe to work together, and shore up our industrial bases,” the official said.

“It’s a survival issue,” said Pavlo Verkhniatskyi, managing partner at COSA Intelligence Solutions in Kyiv, since there is only so long Ukraine can expect to rely on donations from partners whose support can be switched off with a single election.

That effort [Ukraine’s growing refrain to become self-sufficient but with help from other countries] will rely on co-production deals “that will develop capabilities in the region initially and then in-country when possible.”

On September 30, Zelenskyi announced the creation of the Defense Industries Alliance. Manufacturers of weapons and military equipment from all over the globe will be able to join the group, he said.

According to Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry, when the conference ended, 38 countries from 19 countries had already joined the alliance. Ukraine signed 20 contracts with foreign firms, it added.

In future, Ukraine will become a “donor of global security” thanks to its defense production, Zelenskyi said, wrapping up the forum.

France, Ukraine to jointly produce Aarok drones in Ukraine

The French company Turgis & Gaillard signed an agreement with the Ukrainian state-owned company Antonov to produce multi-role Aarok drones in Ukraine, French newspaper La Tribune said on Monday, October 2.

The deal was signed during a visit to Kyiv by French Defense Minister Sébastien Lecornu on September 28. Representatives from around 20 weapons manufacturers, including Turgis & Gaillard, travelled with him to the Ukrainian capital. Drone production is expected to begin next year. The companies still have to choose a production site and drone’s components. 

Ukrainian-produced Aarok drones will be exclusively used by the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

Aarok has a flight time of more than 24 hours and can carry a payload weight of 1.5 tons. It’s a medium-altitude long-endurance drone that has a length of 14 meters, wingspan of 22 meters, and maximum take-off weight of 5.5 tons. The drone can both conduct reconnaissance and strike targets. 

Ukraine has also signed joint weapons production deals with drone manufacturers Delair and Thales, and Vistory that will build 3D-printing factories to make spare parts.

On September 28, Volodymyr Zelenskyi met with Sébastien Lecornu. The Office of the President of Ukraine said they discussed weapons supplies and ways to bolster Ukraine’s air defenses. Ukraine plans to launch joint production of “some types of weapons” with France.

On the same day, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and UK Defence Secretary Grant Shapps made a visit to Kyiv. The visit was Shapps’ first to the Ukrainian capital since he became defence secretary.

Sanctions against Russian liquefied natural gas – why are they important? #515

In this episode of Ukraine in flames, the speakers discuss the attempts to impose sanctions on Russia, however advocate for even more stringent measures, including embargoes, specifically targeting Russian liquefied natural gas (LNG). They talk of Belgium’s substantial involvement in the import and transshipment of Russian LNG and the significance of the Arctic region for Russia, coupled with its hostile and illegal maritime operations. This episode underscores the potential repercussions of the Russian Federation’s actions in the Arctic, emphasizing their implications for global security. Take a watch of UIF #515 to learn more!


  • Andriy Zhupanin, Member of Parliament of Ukraine 
  • Oleh Savytskyi, campaign manager of Razom We Stand 
  • Bohdan Ustymenko, Director of the Ukrainian Institute of Security and Maritime Law