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In Policy Shift, Germany Now Says It Will Send Ukraine 1,500 Anti-Tank, Antiaircraft Missiles

By RFE/RL February 26, 2022

The German government says it will supply 1,000 anti-tank and 500 Stinger antiaircraft missiles to bolster Ukraine's defenses in the face of an unprovoked onslaught by Russian forces, in a significant shift in Berlin's policy regarding the war.

Germany also said on February 26 that it would allow the Netherlands to ship hundreds of German-made anti-tank weapons to Ukraine.

"The Russian invasion of Ukraine marks a turning point. It is our duty to do our best to support Ukraine in defending itself against Putin's invading army," Chancellor Olaf Scholz said in a statement.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy welcomed Germany's decision.

"Germany has just announced the provision of anti-tank grenade launchers and stinger missiles to Ukraine. Keep it up, Chancellor Olaf Scholz!" he wrote on Twitter.

Germany has just announced the provision of anti-tank grenade launchers and stinger missiles to Ukraine. Keep it up, Chancellor @OlafScholz! Anti-war coalition in action!
— Володимир Зеленський (@ZelenskyyUa) February 26, 2022

Earlier in the day, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki accused some Western countries, and Germany in particular, for allowing their "unyielding egoism" to keep them from pushing for the "crushing" sanctions needed against Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.

"There is no time today for the kind of unyielding egoism that we see in certain Western countries, including here in Germany unfortunately," Morawiecki told Polish reporters in Berlin ahead of a meeting with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz on February 26.

"That is why I came here...to shake the conscience of Germany. So that they finally decide on sanctions that are actually crushing," he added, according to the Polish news agency PAP.

Morawiecki had singled out Germany's failure to supply weapons to Ukraine, instead offering helmets.

Meanwhile, the Netherlands said it will supply air-defense rockets and anti-tank systems to Ukraine following a request by Kyiv.

The Dutch government told parliament it would rapidly ship 200 Stinger rockets and 50 Panzerfaust 3 anti-tank weapons with 400 rockets.

Most Western nations have stepped up shipments of defensive military hardware to Ukraine and have imposed financial sanctions against Moscow, with more being promised.

Based on reporting by AFP, Reuters, and dpa

Source: https://www.rferl.org/a/germany-military-aid- ukraine-equipment/31725290.html

Copyright (c) 2022. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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