Germany Hesitant to Supply Vital Leopard 2 Battle Tanks to Ukraine Despite Polish and Lithuanian Pressure

1: poland has officially asked germany for permission to export leopard 2 battle tanks to ukraine. lithuania’s president gitanas nauseda said he believed poland was determined to send their tanks to support ukraine after meeting with the polish president andrezej duda. germany’s defence minister boris pistorious said berlin had given allied nations the green light to train ukrainians to use leopard 2 tanks, but did not commit to sending their own. poland’s prime minister masteusz morawiecki said he hoped germany would quickly respond to the request, and accused germany of “delaying, dodging, acting in a way that is difficult to understand”.

2: the request was made when poland’s defence minister mariusz blaszczak appealed to germany to “join the coalition of countries supporting ukraine with leopard 2 tanks”. germany has insisted the final decision lies with chancellor olaf scholz. germany’s defence minister boris pistorious said a decision about supplying the tanks would be made soon and would be taken at a political level.

3: ukraine sees the tanks as vital for breaking through russian lines and to beat an anticipated counter offensive. germany has been hesitant to send the vehicles, or allow other nations to do the same, with one of its concerns being the fear that a sudden move on the issue could further escalate the conflict with russia. export laws mean any country that wishes to send the tanks require berlin’s permission. allied nations have become frustrated at what they perceive as german reluctance to send the armoured vehicles in recent days. germany’s defence minister boris pistorious defended german chancellor olaf scholz against criticism that he was dragging his feet on sending the vehicles to kyiv. poland would ask the european union to compensate the cost of the tanks it wants to send to ukraine. the leopard 2 tanks were specifically designed to compete with the russian t-90 tanks, which are being used in the invasion.

By Evey Lovelace

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