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Voice of America: Reznikov ‘very satisfied’ over Ramstein summit
Some military aid was announced behind closed doors at the Ramstein summit held on Jan. 20, an outcome Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov called “very inspiring” in comments to the Voice of America on Jan. 21.
A considerable amount of attention focused on strengthening Ukraine’s air defense by bringing additional air defense systems on top of pledged U.S.-made Patriots, he said.
“We are talking about short, medium, and long-range action possibilities, the same applies to height,” Reznikov said.
Reznikov also told Ukrainian media outlet Liga on Jan. 20 that the Ramstein-8 summit led to an ” optimistic breakthrough” over German-made Leopard tanks delivery.
Reznikov said countries with Leopard 2 tanks in service agreed to start training courses for Ukrainian tank crews before Berlin made a decision on whether it approves the delivery to Ukraine.
On Jan. 20, defense ministers from some 50 countries met at the U.S. Ramstein Air Base in Germany to discuss further support for Ukraine. This was the eighth Ramstein summit since Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24.
The international meeting came amid Kyiv’s frustration with the long-standing dissent over tanks for Ukraine as the full-scale invasion reaches the 11-month mark.
Fighting off pressure from allies, Berlin made no decision to provide the long-anticipated Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine.
After France and the U.K. vowed to supply tanks to Ukraine, the pressure had been mounting for Germany to either provide Leopards, or clear ways for its buyers, such as Poland, to complete their promised transfer of the tanks.
Western tanks, particularly the powerful German-made Leopards, would give Ukraine a major equipment advantage over Russia, which relies on old Soviet stock.