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Central government must give OK: Poland wants to supply “Leopard 2” tanks to Ukraine


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Central government should give OK
Poland wants to supply “Leopard 2” tanks to Ukraine

Western countries are increasingly likely to supply Ukraine with main battle tanks. At a meeting in Lviv, eastern Ukraine, Polish President Duda offered Leopard 2 tanks. This increases the pressure on the central government. A government spokesman declined.

Poland is ready to deliver Leopard main battle tanks to Ukraine as part of an international alliance. Polish President Andrzej Duda made the announcement at a joint press conference with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and Lithuanian President Kitanas Nowseda in Lviv, western Ukraine. A company of ‘Leopard’ main battle tanks will be delivered as part of the emerging alliance,” Duda said. Twelve tanks are said to be under discussion.

Ukraine has long demanded the supply of “Leopard” battle tanks. After much hesitation, the federal government announced on Thursday that it would supply Ukraine with “Mortar” armored personnel carriers and the Patriot air defense system. The British government has also hinted at an initiative in discussions about supplying Ukraine with modern main battle tanks. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has instructed Defense Secretary Ben Wallace to work with allies in the coming weeks to discuss “how we can go further in our support for Ukraine”. This includes delivery of tanks. The media recently reported that London is considering the delivery of Challenger 2 main battle tanks. However, Berlin is wary of the “Leopard” tanks.

Government spokesman Steffen Hebestreit said in Berlin that there was “no new situation” on the matter. He added that the German government’s position was unlikely to change before the January 20 NATO meeting in Ramstein. Then Western allies will again discuss how to support Ukraine militarily. With the provision of armored personnel carriers by Germany and the United States, there is already a “step up in terms of quality,” said Hebstreit.

Germany must agree to delivery

A government spokesman insisted he was not aware of any inquiries from partners seeking to supply Ukraine with “Leopard” tanks. He told the concerned reporters that nothing has changed in the position. In this case, Germany must give its consent. Apart from media reports, he was not aware of any requests from the Allies for Germany to supply the “Leopard” tanks. Above all there is close consultation with allies like the US and France. A government spokesman insisted that the announcement of the British government’s intention to supply main battle tanks would not change that.

The “Leopard” type battle tank has been built by the Munich arms company Krauss-Maffei Wegmann for almost 60 years. The “Leopard 2” successor model, built in cooperation with Rheinmetall, was introduced into the German armed forces in 1979. A tank company usually consists of 14 main battle tanks.

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