The case concerns the decision of Central European countries (including Poland and the Czech Republic) to hand over Soviet-made tanks to the Ukrainian army fighting the Russians. In return, as promised by the German government, both countries had to receive Leopard tanks. In the case of Poland, this did not happen, because Warsaw, unlike Prague, did not want to be content with the older type of tank and demanded the latest Leopard models.
Situation President Andrzej Duda recently commentedWithout saving strong words for the German government.
– We have delivered a large number of tanks to Ukraine because we believe that it is our duty as a neighbour. A large part of our tank arsenal are German Leopard machines. So if we receive support from Berlin, and if we receive substitutes as part of the exchange, we will be very happy – said the President of Poland.
– [Niemcy – przyp. red.] They did not keep that promise. And frankly, we’re very disappointed about it – Duda added.
Berlin, in the words of the government spokesman, Stephen Hebestreet, expressed its astonishment at the words of the Polish president. Now, Chancellor Olaf Schultz has taken the floor.
The German prime minister said Berlin was in talks with all Eastern European partners and wanted to “take the talks with Poland as seriously as with the Czech Republic and Slovakia”. Schulz noted that Germany has concluded an agreement with the Czech government “on what and when we will provide it.” In return, Prague will send T-72 tanks to Ukraine.
The federal chancellor admitted that he was “extremely surprised” by the criticism from Poland. “The German army does not have a large stockpile of working vehicles that simply need to be shipped,” he noted. The reason for this is that the German army has been severely underfunded for many years.
“This has limited our overall defensive capabilities, which must now be changed with the help of a special fund,” Schultz said.
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