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Scholz against Ukraine using German weapons to strike Russian territory

by Dominic Culverwell May 26, 2024 6:27 PM 2 min read
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelensky sign an economic and security agreement as Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, (L) German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (C) and German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius (R) stand in the background on Feb. 16, 2024, in Berlin, Germany. (Michele Tantussi/Getty Images)
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German Chancellor Olaf Scholz is against Ukraine using Western weapons to target Russian territory, the German public-service broadcaster ARD reported on May 26.

Speaking at an event in Berlin, Scholz said that Germany gave clear rules to Ukraine prohibiting the use of German weapons on Russian soil and that he sees no reason to change this. He added that his policy is to prevent escalation into a “really big war.”

Ukraine’s allies have discussed Kyiv’s calls to greenlight the use of Western weapons on military targeting within Russia. German Green Party politician Anton Hofreiter recently spoke in favor of the idea in order to protect Ukrainian civilians.

"We should therefore not prevent Ukraine from using the weapons supplied to repel Russian fighter jets in Russian airspace," said Hofreiter, ARD reported on May 25.

Ukrainian member of parliament Yehor Cherniev claimed that Washington has begun to discuss the decision to allow Ukraine to use U.S. weapons on Russian territory, citing informal conversations on the sidelines of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly.

“The problem so far is that decisions there are made by a team that currently lacks consensus. But there is pressure from all sides. There are chances, so we are not slowing down,” he wrote on Telegram on May 26.

U.S. House Speaker Mike Johnson appeared to endorse enabling Ukraine to strike targets in Russian territory with U.S.-supplied weapons on May 22 after claiming that Washington shouldn’t “micromanage” Ukraine’s war effort.

A bipartisan group of congressmen also urged the Pentagon to change the restriction, saying that it has prevented Ukrainians from being able to "defend themselves."

Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis recently said that the U.S. restriction on using long-range ATACMS missiles inside Russia was a "mistake."

U.S. officials have repeatedly said that they do not support or encourage Kyiv's strikes with American weapons deep inside Russia, while Ukrainian officials are reportedly trying to convince Washington to lift this ban.

Ukraine recently said that Washington's ban meant Ukraine was unable to attack Russian forces as they were building up before crossing the border into Kharkiv Oblast in the renewed Russian offensive that began earlier in May.

Zelensky: Russia forming another grouping of forces near Ukraine’s northern border
“Russia is preparing for offensive actions also 90 kilometers northwest from here – they gather another group of troops near our border... The one who does all this doesn’t want peace,” President Volodymyr Zelensky said in a video address to the world leaders recorded in Kharkiv on May 26.
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