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Leopards for Ukraine: the first item on Germany’s new defense minister’s agenda

#StandWithUkraine
January 18,2023 668
Leopards for Ukraine: the first item on Germany’s new defense minister’s agenda

According to Reuters, “Ukraine came a step closer on Tuesday in its bid to win a fleet of modern battle tanks it hopes could turn the course of the war with Russia, after the West’s big holdout Germany said this would be the first item on its new defense minister’s agenda.”

That day, Boris Pistorius, a regional politician viewed as close to Chancellor Olaf Scholz, was named to replace Christine Lambrecht in the office of defense minister. In his first comments on the job, Pistorius made no mention of weapons for Ukraine.

“This is the first question to be decided concretely,” Germany’s Economy Minister Robert Habeck told a radio broadcaster on Tuesday before the appointment was announced.

Several European countries say they are willing to share with Ukraine some German-made Leopard battle tanks from their stocks but cannot deliver them without authorization from Berlin, which has so far demurred.

Germany has been cautious about approving weapons that could be seen as escalating conflict.

Scholz, speaking on Tuesday in an interview for Bloomberg TV, confirmed that discussions with Germany’s allies on tanks were ongoing but should not be conducted in public.

Photo: Julian Stratenschulte/dpa/picture alliance via rp.pl

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