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Pressure from the US and Poland forces Berlin to lift its veto on sending tanks to Ukraine

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius during their meeting on Tuesday in Berlin

The combined pressure of Poland and the United States has forced the Government of Olaf Schölz to lift its veto on the delivery to Ukraine of the German-made Leopard 2 tanks, which the Government of Volodimir Zelensky considered essential to recover territory occupied by Russia. The Warsaw Government had formally requested Berlin to authorize the transfer of its own Leopards. For its part, the White House of Joe Biden preparing to send Abrams main battle tanks to Ukraine in order to cover the German decision.

The announcements from Warsaw and Washington took place this Tuesday and have intensified the pressure on Scholz to clear up the recurring doubts that he had expressed in recent weeks. In the end, the chancellor has been forced to rectify. It will not only give Poland the green light to send its tanks to Ukraine, but it will also send at least one company of Leopard 2s in possession of Germany, it has advanced. Magazine Der Spiegel.

The penultimate to give a push to Berlin was NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, who met in Berlin early Tuesday morning with the new German Defense Minister, Boris Pistorius. “Battle tanks are of course importantboth to be able to repel the new Russian offensives and so that Ukraine can recover territory to win and prevail as a sovereign and independent nation in Europe”, alleged the secretary general of the Atlantic Alliance.

[España no enviará tanques Leopard a Ucrania sin consenso para no dividir a la UE como en Irak]

“We’ve had a good discussion on the subject of German main battle tanks, and I hope there will be a solution soon“, Stoltenberg said at his press conference with Pistorius. The German Defense Minister told that now that there was no news about the Leopard.

Scholz’s vacillations and lack of clarity are damaging Germany’s credibility in Europe and in NATO. These types of doubts are really counterproductive for a chancellor who wants to be a leader in matters of the EU’s foreign and security policy,” he told EL ESPAÑOL. Raphael Lossresearcher at the European Council on Foreign Relations. “The fact that the Polish government has had to go to the point of submitting a formal request shows their degree of mistrust and lack of understanding of what Berlin is doing,” he points out.

Early in the morning, Poland had officially requested authorization from Berlin to be able to send its Leopard 2 to Ukraine. Your Prime Minister, Mateusz Morawieckiwarned that he would bypass any attempt to veto Germany and seek to form a “smaller coalition” of volunteer countries to assist the Zelensky government. “Poland and the free world cannot afford not to send Leopard tanks and modern weaponry to Ukraine. We know that Russia’s insatiable appetite to dominate and conquer other countries is the real and only danger to stability, security and peace in Europe”Morawiecki alleges.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius during their meeting on Tuesday in Berlin

Reuters

But it has been the leak by the White House of its intention to also send a “significant number” of Abrams tanks that has finally subdued Scholz. The United States had so far refused to supply these tanks to Ukraine. on the grounds that they are very difficult to maintain and manage. But Biden is now changing his position as part of a global agreement with Germany, aimed at curbing divisions that had arisen in the Western bloc over tanks just as the war in Ukraine is about to mark a year.

“This suggests that Olaf Scholz was hesitating above all because of the guarantees that he hopes the US decision will provide him to also supply Abrams tanks. Above all political guarantees, but also with regard to concerns about a possible escalation of the war in Ukraine,” explains Rafael Loss.

The risk that Vladimir Putin intensify the war in the Ukraine as a response to sending heavy tanks has been one of Berlin’s main arguments to justify its blockade. A position that the rest of the allies do not share. The escalation argument is invalid because Russia continues to escalate. To restore peace in Europe we must give Ukraine everything that is necessary and possible, including also battle tanks,” he said on Monday. Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics.



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