22 JANUARY 2023
Germany would not oppose it if Poland sends German-made Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine.
L’Allemagne franchit un seuil inédit sur @LCI par la voix de la ministre A.Baerbock. Elle «ne s’opposerait pas» si la Pologne envoie les Léopards.— Darius Rochebin (@DariusRochebin) January 22, 2023
-J'ai bien entendu, vous avez dit, si les Polonais l'envoient, vous ne vous y opposeriez pas?
-A.Baerbock: Vous m'avez bien compris. pic.twitter.com/HGykBGhocL
Details: When asked what would happen if Poland sent its Leopard 2 tanks without German approval, Baerbock said: “We will not stand in the way. For the moment the question has not been asked, but if we were asked we would not stand in the way.”
“We know how important these tanks are and this is why we are discussing this now with our partners…We need to make sure people’s lives are saved and Ukraine’s territory liberated,” added the German foreign minister.
The journalist asked if he correctly understood that Germany would not object if Poland sends Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine. “You understood me correctly,” answered Baerbock.
Background: At the Ramstein-format meeting on 20 January, German Defence Minister Boris Pistorius said that the Western allies have not yet agreed to provide Ukraine with Leopard 2 main battle tanks, but he instructed his ministry to prepare for “the day that may come.”
Some German politicians have since urged their government to at least allow the transfer of Leopards to other countries that are ready to do so, and several hundred people organised a rally in Berlin to demand the tanks be provided to Ukraine.