German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has said he remains convinced of the need to coordinate weapons deliveries to Ukraine with allies as pressure mounts on Berlin to send Kyiv its Leopard-2 battle tanks, the Reuters news agency quoted the politician as saying on Jan. 9.
“Germany will always remain united with its friends and allies,” he said.
“Anything else would be irresponsible in such a dangerous situation.”
Meanwhile, according to German public broadcaster Deutsche Welle, Scholz rejects criticism that he is acting too hesitantly.
“Germany is at the forefront of supporting Ukraine,” he said.
On Jan. 7, Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak confirmed that Ukraine is negotiating with its international partners about the transfer of heavy tanks, specifically — the German-made Leopard-2. According to him, the discussions are “already at the finish line.”
U.S. political news outlet Politico reported on Jan. 9 that France and Poland are pushing Germany to equip Kyiv with its powerful Leopard-2 tanks.
A French official told Politico that Paris is turning the screws on Germany in the hope of extracting an agreement from Berlin to send Leopard tanks to Ukraine ahead of a Franco-German summit on January 22, the 60th anniversary of the Élysée partnership treaty between the two nations.
U.S. newspaper The Wall Street Journal earlier reported that Poland is considering supplying Ukraine with Leopards. Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki confirmed negotiations were underway, but said Warsaw does not plan to transfer the tanks to Ukraine without support from a broader coalition of allies.