"This boat concretely materializes our solidarity. It would have been inconceivable for us to remain indifferent to the fate of the Ukrainian people who are suffering this war in their flesh, a war that they did not choose and against which they are resisting with so much courage", said French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna, who came to the port of France's second city for the occasion.
The boat has on board civil security equipment including fifteen fire and rescue vehicles, eight watercraft, rescue and clearing equipment, bridges in spare parts but also mine clearance equipment, 25 tons of medical equipment and 60,000 food rations, said the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which is coordinating the operation.
The value of the shipment is 10 million euros, the same source said.
"While Vladimir Putin is once again choosing to rush forward (...), we are acting responsibly without sparing our support for Ukraine", underlined the French minister. Many countries have condemned the annexation "referendums" organized by Moscow in Ukrainian regions, with France calling them a "masquerade".
Catherine Colonna had already mentioned on Tuesday "a strengthening" of this support, both in terms of the supply of defense equipment and the fight against impunity and in financial and humanitarian terms, during a meeting in kyiv with the President Ukrainian Volodymyr Zelensky and his counterpart Dmytro Kuleba.
The arrival of the boat from the CMA CGM shipping company is scheduled for October 4 at the Romanian port of Constanta on the Black Sea. The cargo will then be transported to the humanitarian hub of Suceava (Romania), not far from the border with Ukraine, where it will be transported by road.