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Pistorius: Arms industry increasing capacity, Germany delivers 'what it can'

by Elsa Court and The Kyiv Independent news desk December 6, 2023 2:47 PM 2 min read
German Minister of Defense Boris Pistorius speaks during a questioning of the Federal Government in the Bundestag on Nov. 29, 2023. (Melissa Erichsen/picture alliance via Getty Images)
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German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius rejected the notion that Ukraine receives "too little to win and too much to lose" regarding military aid from its partners during an interview with German public broadcaster ZDF on Dec. 5.

"We deliver what we can. The same applies to almost all other allies and partners," Pistorius said.

Pistorius admitted there were issues in the supply chain of Europe's arms industry, which "dates back to peacetime" and "cannot deliver in certain areas as quickly as the needs are there."

He said that the defense industry is increasing capacity "wherever it can," but warned this takes time.  

Pistorius also said that the EU's goal of delivering one million rounds of artillery ammunition by March 2024 would not be met and that he warned of this "very early on because I saw that this number would probably  not be reached."

The EU set a target in March 2023 to increase the bloc's output of 155-mm shells to 1 million rounds per year for Ukraine.

Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba confirmed on Nov. 13 that the EU is behind schedule in delivering the 1 million shells.

Pistorius promised that there would be improvements "in the next few months," and Germany would deliver almost 200,000 rounds of ammunition to Ukraine.

"But everything takes time, and it's not a question of political decisions or financial resources."

Pistorius also rejected the notion that the West does not want to see a full Ukrainian victory on the battlefield, saying that "we should be more afraid that Russia will win this war," in part because Germany will be faced "with a completely new security situation."

The West's responsibility is "to create a situation on the battlefield, in the war, that Putin realizes that he cannot win this war - and that is why he comes to the negotiating table."

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