Berlin, 24 January 2023 (dpa/MIA) – German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has agreed to supply Ukraine with Leopard 2 battle tanks, sources told dpa on Tuesday, after weeks of building pressure on Berlin to offer Kiev heavier weapons.
Berlin has also granted other countries, such as Poland, permission to re-export the German-made tanks to Ukraine, the sources in government circles said.
Scholz had held out for months against the growing chorus of people urging him to send Kiev the tanks – not just Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky but also NATO allies and members of his own coalition government.
Zelensky had taken an especially tough line, saying Berlin’s hesitation was costing Ukrainian lives.
Scholz had argued he needed to be in lockstep with the United States, which has also yet to send Ukraine its main battle tanks.
But the Wall Street Journal and other US media outlets reported Tuesday that the Biden administration was now poised to reverse course and send Ukraine its Abrams tanks.