By Chris King • 23 January 2023 • 1:28
Image of German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock.
Credit: Wikipedia - By President.gov.ua, CC BY 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=117876700
UPDATE: Monday, January 23 at 01:30am
According to Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock, Germany would not block the export of Leopard tanks from third countries to Ukraine, as reported by spiegel.de on Sunday, January 22.
“The question hasn’t been asked at the moment, but if we were asked, we wouldn’t stand in the way,” the Green politician told French broadcaster LCI. Baerbock was responding to the question of what would happen if Poland carried out its threat of delivering Leopard tanks to Ukraine.
Earlier in the day, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki had revealed that he was prepared to supply tanks to Ukraine without consulting the German government.
Economics Minister Robert Habeck had already made a similar statement in mid-January. Germany should “not stand in the way when other countries make decisions to support Ukraine. This applies regardless of which decisions Germany makes”, he insisted.
Ultimately, any decision by German to send tanks rests with the Chancellor, Olaf Scholz. For the time being he seems to be taking a very cautious approach. A meeting of the NATO allies at the Ramstein airbase last Friday 20 failed to reach a decision.
Sunday, January 22 at 9:31pm
Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki today, Sunday, January 22, criticised the German government’s delay in agreeing to deliver Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine. He threatened to create a ‘smaller coalition’ which would go ahead and supply the hardware without Germany’s involvement.
During an interview with PAP, the politician said that he believed Germany was sabotaging the actions of other countries who were prepared to assist Kyiv.
“Ukraine and Europe will win this war – with or without Germany. Poland will create a smaller coalition of countries ready to donate part of their modern equipment, and modern tanks to warring Ukraine”, Morawiecki told the news outlet.
He did not specify which countries could join this coalition. The prime minister called the issue of deliveries of Leopard tanks to Ukraine as being of: “Polish and European national interests”, as reported by kommersant.ru.
The need to coordinate the sending of the Leopard to the Armed Forces of Ukraine with the German government is due to the exclusive right of the Federal Republic of Germany as a weapons manufacturer.
On January 20, following a meeting of the allies at the Ramstein airbase, Boris Pistorius, the new head of the German Ministry of Defence announced that a decision on the supply of tanks had not yet been made.
While Mateusz Morawiecki seems intent on providing continual military aid to Ukraine, protestors took to the streets of the country’s capital city, Warsaw, yesterday to demonstrate against such a move.
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Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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