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Scholz again rules out Germany's delivery of long-range Taurus missiles

by Nate Ostiller and The Kyiv Independent news desk February 26, 2024 4:50 PM 2 min read
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz speaks during a press conference at the end of a European Union summit at the EU headquarters in Brussels on Oct. 27, 2023. (John Thys/AFP via Getty Images)
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German Chancellor Olaf Scholz reiterated his refusal to send Ukraine long-range Taurus missiles at a press conference on Feb. 26, days after the German parliament rejected a measure explicitly calling for Taurus to be provided.

Taurus missiles, which have a range of up to 500 kilometers (310 miles), have been the subject of extensive discussion since Ukraine submitted a request to acquire the weapons in May 2023.

Scholz is reportedly against sending Taurus missiles to Kyiv because he fears the move will draw Germany into the war. Ukraine has received other long-range missiles, such as the Storm Shadow from the U.K. and the French-made SCALP.

Germany's parliament supported a motion to deliver unspecified long-range weapons to Ukraine on Feb. 22, the same day it rejected sending Taurus missiles.

Scholz repeated past claims at the Feb. 26 press conference that the targeting system for the Taurus is different from those used in the Storm Shadow and SCALP, and cannot be done from Germany.

In previous arguments why Germany could not send Taurus missiles, Scholz said he was concerned German personnel would have to be on the ground in Ukraine to help the missile targeting process, which he has ruled out.

Scholz again rejected the direct participation of German soldiers in the targeting of Russian forces on Feb. 26 and said there could be no German troop presence in Ukraine.

The tenor of the debate surrounding Taurus missiles is "very irritating," said Scholz, adding that there is an unnecessary focus on the Taurus when Ukraine's ammunition shortage is a more pressing concern.

After months of impasse in the U.S. Congress over aid to Ukraine, American military assistance has effectively run dry, which has begun to impact Ukraine's battlefield capabilities.

Bundestag votes against Taurus missiles for Ukraine, supports sending ‘necessary long-range missiles’
The German parliament held two votes on providing long-range weapons to Ukraine on Feb. 22, first rejecting a motion explicitly mentioning Taurus missiles, followed by supporting a motion calling for Germany to send additional long-range weapons.
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