Monday, June 24, 2024

Exclusive Interview : French armament expert Edmond Huet discusses the issues to arm Ukraine

French armament expert Edmond Huet re-armament of Ukraine army to guarantee regional stability.

Q. You have been introduced in many interviews by the medias of Ukraine, France , Switzerland and others for the past two years as an armament expert who recently has been proved 100% right on the analysis of the MH 17 downing by Russians over occupied Donbas, how can your experience and skills help Ukraine now?

A.  Yes, we debated recently on UA Tea Time with Sergei Velichansky and Olivier Vedrine about the whereabouts of my presence in Ukraine.

Apart of the identification of the arms and ammunition used against the Maidaners. I have been involved in a project as member of a think tank reporting to the Presidential Administration of Ukraine as arms expert and more precisely as ammunition expert since I had designed and manufactured two small arms ammunition for a special unit in France as part of my activities, these ammunitions were designed to meet stringent requirements that most world’s leading manufacturers deemed impossible to hold and I successfully designed and produced them, obtaining a CIP agreement from the French National Proof House under number DCB 95/2003.


This is the part that drew attention to me and I was offered to participate to the definition of a project related to the creation of a small arms ammunition factory in Ukraine with side projects linked to export of locally made products up to 23mm.

During meetings linked to these projects, I proposed to work with the French company Manurhin and I offered my assistance to negotiate with this company or its competitors in order to launch a first line dedicated to 5.45x39mm cartridge production in a short term, this line being produced in France with the presence of technicians from Ukraine hence allowing Ukraine to produce some other lines under license once an agreement could be reached for a transfer of technology.

I had some particularly favourable skills to offer such as my experience in this field, my multilingual ability, my technical competences and being a European Union passport holder that can travel without a visa almost anywhere in the world without the need for a visa, being a French making it even easier for some of the world’s region where I could travel at instant notice and where I had contacts that could benefit the industries from Ukraine.

This began 15 months ago and contrary to rumours published by badly informed people assuming that I was a lobbyist and representative of Manurhin who obtained from the ukrainian authorities that no international request for tenders would be implemented and the deal reserved for Manurhin in exchange for an extra charge of 20 million USD that I would use partly as kickbacks to corrupt officials, I have been out of the game for a year after having been bypassed, contacts having been taken directly with Manurhin hence making it impossible for me to have participated in deal of any kind.

Furthermore, I would like to add that figures wildly running on the blogosphere are pure fantasies, the only part being true is that I am the person who advised the think tank about launching a consultation and a request for quotation from Manurhin and other companies.

I can tell you the 80 million figure for Manurhin contract is pure speculation. I can tell you that no deal is finalized. I can tell you that the request for quotation does not match a 60 million offer from another supplier.

I bet our poster is unable to support his figures/data with any hard evidence.
Just hearsay like me having being the representative to lobby for Manurhin and having pocketed 20 million USD

I can offer today exactly the same skills, experience and competences I had offered 15 months a go but I have some doubts Ukraine really wishes to have foreigners in any position in sectors where corruption, nepotism and incompetence are running high as demonstrated by the way foreigners are being ejected from all the positions they had been offered.

After having participated to other events where I met top brass persons to discuss the possibility of launching this project with private investors, the last meeting having taken place on Bankova mid December 2015, I decided to take some distance with any projects related to armaments and I am taking a new route with the launch of a trade consultant activity, my major in my Master being international commerce and having worked mainly for foreign companies during my career in various domains like plastic industry, metallurgy, automotive and building industry.

Ukraine has huge needs due to the trade agreement with European Union for which Ukraine is absolutely not prepared.

Q.  Will United States of America continue supporting Ukraine after presidential elections in November 2016 ?

A. May I answer when I get my crystal ball back from repair? More seriously, I do not think we will see clearly the potential outcome before coming Summer or even not before September.

I am in close relation with many individuals in USA, some of them being linked to the Congress or the Presidential Administration, I will not take any bet on the potential winner before the end of Summer , the only thing I am sure of, Ukraine has to count on Ukraine and Ukraine better stop disappointing its best supporters.

Q.  What kind of military equipment and military technologies from EU countries are needed in Ukraine today ?

A.  Apart of manufacturing cartridges? mainly equipment that allows all weather combat, day and night, thermal sights and night vision.

Anti Tank weapons as well. But in fact Ukraine is able to be self sufficient as I saw with some products I have been shown and asked to sell abroad, like some thermal equipment.

And again, western nations hesitate to supply equipment for two reasons, being scared of provoking Putin and not willing to see these equipments enrich some corrupt persons like it has already happened.

I will add that I was in contact with persons and entities willing to let some equipment to Ukraine instead of destroying it and they abandoned the idea to give it after understanding that in order to give these equipments, they had to bribe some persons.

Q. What message would you like to send to  leading arms companies who want to come to Ukraine ?

A.  Not sure I want to send them any message after what I experienced here. Not even “stay out”. They can take their responsibility and act as they wish. Ukraine is a country where having a Plan B is not enough, plan up to Plan E.

Ukraine is a country with such a huge potential in so many domains that it is difficult to understand the difficulties encountered by this country all along its history until you live here like I do and being both an actor and an observer in this troubled of time, then you find the worst enemy of Ukraine is Ukraine.

It looks a lot like France, finally…

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Executive Editor

About author:

Dylan Malyasov
Dylan Malyasov
Dylan Malyasov is the editor-in-chief of Defence Blog. He is a journalist, an accredited defense advisor, and a consultant. His background as a defense advisor and consultant adds a unique perspective to his journalistic endeavors, ensuring that his reporting is well-informed and authoritative. read more