On Tuesday, speaking in Davos, Polish President Andrzej Duda called on Germany to make the decision, arguing that it is a “very, very, very, very needed decision” for Ukraine.
Duda was speaking on a panel about European defense matters during the World Economic Forum gathering in Switzerland.
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Lithuanian President Gitanas Nausėda echoed Duda’s comments and suggested that Germany may be getting closer to making a decision.
“The attitude in Germany is changing,” Nauseda said, adding that Germany’s hesitance so far to allow the release of German Leopard tanks to Ukraine was a “very strategic factor” in the war.
“I have to tell you honestly, it’s a pity because every day of this war costs a lot,” Nausėda continued. “We don’t have the luxury for such delays, and decision-making must be decisive, fast.”
The comments follow an announcement from the Polish government that it would send 14 Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine. Duda said that he cannot go ahead with the plan, however, unless he is permitted by Germany to export them.
Germany has already committed not to block the move, with German Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck stating recently that Poland simply needs to make a formal request to re-export the tanks.
President Duda, however, appears to have hopes that Germany will not only approve the request but will also send more tanks alongside the shipment promised by the Polish government.
“We hope that the producer of those tanks, Germany, will also participate – in my opinion, a very good idea,” the Polish president said.
“I was asked by Volodymyr Zelenskyy for that military support a few times. He said to me, ‘Andrzej, we need those modern tanks because it is the only way to stop Russian invasion.”
Bakhmut Fighters Request Modern Tanks for Ukraine
Describing the ongoing fighting in Soledar, a town just 11 miles from Bakhmut, serving soldiers described how they suffered “very heavy losses.”
Danylo, an officer who oversees the repair of tanks for the 24th Mechanized Brigade, said that the deadlock between the two sides in the region won’t be broken until a significant number of Western tanks arrive.
“Yes, we’ll be stuck here. We need these [tanks] to stop Russia’s aggression. With infantry, covered by tanks, we’ll win for sure,” Danylo told the BBC.
Jack Buckby is 19FortyFive’s Breaking News Editor. He is a British author, counter-extremism researcher, and journalist based in New York. Reporting on the U.K., Europe, and the U.S., he works to analyze and understand left-wing and right-wing radicalization, and reports on Western governments’ approaches to the pressing issues of today. His books and research papers explore these themes and propose pragmatic solutions to our increasingly polarized society.