Poland to send first Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine today — Bloomberg

24 February, 04:47 PM
REUTERS/Benjamin Westhoff

REUTERS/Benjamin Westhoff

Poland will send the first 14 Leopard 2 battle tanks it pledged to Ukraine on Feb. 24, Bloomberg reports, citing an unnamed official.

According to the source, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki will announce the delivery during his visit to Kyiv on the anniversary of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24.

Polish Defense Minister Mariusz Blaszczak announced on Feb. 15 that the allies had formed a battalion of Leopard 2A4 tanks for Ukraine. Earlier, Pentagon chief Lloyd Austin indicated that a group of countries, including Germany, Poland, Canada, Portugal, Spain, Norway, Denmark, and the Netherlands, is working on providing Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine.

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On Jan. 25, Germany, after much hesitation, approved the transfer of 14 Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine and their re-export from partner countries. The same day, the United States announced that it would send 31 Abrams tanks to Ukraine. German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius stated that the first tanks could be sent to Ukraine by the end of March.

Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said that Ukraine would receive 120-140 modern Western-made tanks in the first wave.

On Feb. 7, the German Federal Government approved the supply of Leopard 1 tanks to Ukraine. Berlin has issued a license to German military companies to supply 178 Leopard 1A5 tanks to Ukraine. During his visit to Kyiv on Feb. 7, German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius confirmed that Ukraine would receive more than 100 Leopard 1A5 tanks from several European countries.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy earlier said that Ukraine's defenders need 300-500 tanks to mount an offensive to liberate more Ukrainian territory from Russian occupation.

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