Ahead of President Volodymyr Zelensky’s visit to Berlin, the German government announced on Saturday May 13 that it is preparing a new military aid program for Kyiv, on an unprecedented scale.
According to the weekly it will be Der Spiegel, Berlin’s largest arms export package to Ukraine since the start of the Russian invasion. Ahead of President Volodymyr Zelenski’s visit to Germany, the government announced on Saturday 13 May that it is preparing a new military aid program worth 2.7 billion euros to Ukraine. A large number of tanks, armored vehicles and anti-aircraft defense systems are supplied to Kiev.
“We all want a quick end to this brutal war of Russia against the Ukrainian people, but unfortunately that is not in sight. German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius said in a statement. That is why Germany will provide all the help it can as long as it is needed.
The list of defense equipment leaving for Ukraine is long: 30 additional Cheetah-1 A5 tanks, 20 new armored vehicles of the Marder type, more than a hundred small armored vehicles, 200 surveillance drones, 4 new Iris-D air defense systems and their launchers, numerous anti-aircraft missiles, 18 howitzer type guns and ammunition.
The announcement came as Volodymyr Zelensky was in Rome to meet with the country’s leaders and the Pope before traveling to Berlin on Sunday.
Germany has long been criticized by Kiev and some of its European partners, particularly in the east, for the timid nature of its military support for Ukraine. But for months, Berlin has stepped up its efforts in this area.
Last year, the government already provided 2 billion euros for military support to Ukraine. For this year, so far, an envelope of 2.2 billion has been planned, the content of which has not yet been decided. Notably, Berlin has already committed 14 Leopard-2 A6s from its army stock to the Bundeswehr, which are more capable than the Leopard-1s mentioned in the new aid proposal. He also started training Ukrainian soldiers in these tanks.
Update: At 3:20 pm, Volodymyr Zelensky confirmed his visit to Germany on Sunday.
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