Bivol.bg unveils that Bulgaria purchased rusted missiles from Belarus through a Bulgarian business and delivered them to Ukraine via a Romanian state-owned company. According to the quoted article, Kyiv returned the weapons to Romania, as they were dangerous to their own troops.
The Romanian local publisher defapt.ro took over the investigation and showed that Romarm, Romania’s state-owned company and leading defence techniques and services supplier, bought rusty missiles from Belarus via Bulgaria and sent them to Ukraine.
After the Ukrainians discovered that they had been given outdated, rusted ammunition that could not be used in combat with Russian forces, the weaponry business for Ukraine — which had been maintained a secret by both the Romanian and the Bulgarian governments — was made public. The ammunition turned down was sent back to Romania and then to Bulgaria.
When asked by the Romanian journalists, the director of Romarm, Gabriel Tutu, didn’t admit this commercial procedure took place.
Since the beginning of the war between Ukraine and Russia, NATO countries have helped Ukraine with weapons to deal with the conflict. Although the authorities in Bucharest recently altered the law to permit them to give firearms, Romania and Bulgaria are among the few nations that have not formally acknowledged delivering weapons to the Ukrainian forces. According to official sources, Romania has donated only fuel, bulletproof vests, helmets and other military equipment valued at three million euros.
Asked about Romania’s munition donations, Romanian President Klaus Johannis only said that the fight is approaching Romania, and it is wise not to hand the adversary vital information.
After Bulgarian journalists from the Bivol portal published an investigation that proved that Bulgaria provided weaponry to Ukraine through the Romanian state company, owned by the Romanian Ministry of Economy, the secrecy of the authorities in Bucharest became worthless.
What exactly happened?
The missiles were shipped to Ukraine by Romarm. Bulgaria journalists estimated the ammo’s value at close to $200 million. In addition to 122, 130, and 152 mm shells, they mentioned that they are 122 mm rockets for the Grad systems.
One such case was exposed on Twitter by the Ukraine Weapons Tracker itself. According to Ukraine Weapons Tracker, Romanian arms may have been transferred to the Ukrainian army, which has tracked the development of both sides’ armaments from the start of the conflict. There are six howitzers in Romania, but they have all been out of service since 2005.
The so-called rockets worth USD 200 million were not mentioned by any of the Romanian or the Bulgarian governments as military aid for Ukraine.
The Romanian authorities have not yet commented on this delicate case. The problem, according to sources, was that the ammunition had as end users the Bulgarian company and the Bulgarian state. In such a context, the ammunition was not supposed to leave the Bulgarian territory, let alone be sent to a conflict area.