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German government says it doesn’t plan to provide Ukraine with Leopard tanks

by The Kyiv Independent news desk January 9, 2023 4:44 PM 1 min read
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Germany has no current plans to supply Ukraine with Leopard 2 tanks, the country’s government spokesman said on Jan. 9, cited by Reuters.

The statement comes a day after German Economy Minister Robert Habeck told ARD that the possibility of delivering the tanks “can not be ruled out.”

Ukraine has repeatedly requested to be provided with German-made Leopard 2 tanks operated by several European countries, including Germany, Poland, Finland, the Netherlands, and Spain.

Leopard 2 tanks have an effective range of over 2,000 meters and can move at a maximum speed of 72 kilometers per hour.

Jakub Kumoch, the head of the International Policy Bureau under the Polish President, told Zet on Jan. 9 that Poland may supply Ukraine with a small amount of Leopard 2 tanks, but the issue is still under consideration.

“We are talking about symbolic support, a few, a dozen pieces,” Kumoch said. In total, Poland has more than 240 Leopard 2 tanks.

According to him, Poland “would not do anything alone” as delivering tanks to Ukraine requires work in “a broad international coalition.”

Antti Hakkianen, the Finnish Defense Committee chairman, said Finland was ready to provide Ukraine with Leopard 2 tanks “if Europe gives the green light.”

While Ukraine’s European partners have sent hundreds of Soviet-era tanks, many with modern upgrades, no country has provided Ukraine with Western main battle tanks.

On Jan. 4, France became the first country to provide Ukraine with Western-made armored fighting vehicles – the AMX-10 RC. A day later, Germany followed suit, providing Ukraine with Marder armored fighting vehicles.

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