Berlin will continue to support kyiv but its arms stocks are now too limited, German defense minister says
Berlin is ready to support Ukraine in the future, but in terms of arms supply it cannot “give much more” German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht said on Tuesday.
During a visit to Mullheim, she told reporters that Ukraine could be assured of Germany’s intentions “to continue supporting them in the future.Stressing that Germany had already supplied kyiv with some advanced heavy weapons, such as the Panzerhaubitze 2000, Lambrecht also said that she had a very trusting and constructive relationship with her Ukrainian counterpart, Alexey Reznikov.
“We cannot give much more to the Bundeswehr, I say that very clearly, and my colleague is aware of that,” he added. said the German minister.
Earlier this month, Lambrecht made it clear that Berlin would continue to support Ukraine “with everything possible” but not at the expense of its own defense capabilities.
Germany has been supplying Ukraine with various weapons since the start of the Russian military offensive against the neighboring country at the end of February.
Yet Berlin is lagging far behind the main arms suppliers, the United States and the United Kingdom, and faces accusations from the media and Ukrainian and Polish officials of “over-promising and under-deliveringregarding Ukraine’s military procurement.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has previously addressed the accusations, noting that his country is unable to supply arms to kyiv at a similar rate to that of the United States because its resources are more limited. At the same time, the Chancellor stressed, Germany had already sent all the weapons it had in stock in kyiv, as well as brand new weapons.
Scholz also confirmed that Germany would continue to supply Ukraine under the “circular exchange » principle, a scheme in which Eastern European countries donate their Soviet-era military inventory to Ukraine and in turn receive more modern systems from Germany.
Meanwhile, Russia has repeatedly warned the West against sending weapons to kyiv, saying it will only prolong the conflict, increase the number of casualties and lead to long-term consequences. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov recently said that continuing to “inflate” Ukraine with weapons would only incite Russia “to perform more field missions.