Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) announced further arms deliveries to Ukraine during the general debate in the Bundestag on Wednesday. Among them is an anti-aircraft system.
“In the coming weeks, we will deliver twelve of the most modern self-propelled howitzers in the world to Ukraine, in close cooperation with the Dutch,” said Scholz. The training of Ukrainian soldiers will be completed in a few days.
“The Federal Government has also recently decided that with the IRIS-T system we will deliver the most modern air defense system that Germany has,” the Chancellor continued. “By doing so, we are enabling Ukraine to protect an entire city from Russian air raids.”
Furthermore, Germany will supply Ukraine with a state-of-the-art tracking radar that will spot enemy howitzers, mortars and rocket artillery. Scholz also indicated that Germany would also supply multiple rocket launchers in close cooperation with the USA – but only with a range that did not reach Russia.
At the beginning of the general debate, opposition leader Friedrich Merz accused Scholz of a lack of support for Ukraine in defending against the Russian war of aggression. More than a month after a corresponding decision by the Bundestag, promised heavy weapons had not been delivered, said the CDU leader. If you ask around in the European Union, there is now only resentment, disappointment and “really annoyed” about Germany’s role.
Merz said to Scholz: “You’ve been talking a little more than usual lately, but you’re still saying nothing.” He criticized Scholz for formulating that Russia should not win the war instead of simply saying: “Ukraine must.” win this war.” The chancellor is on the phone with Russian President Vladimir Putin, but has no appointment for the Ukrainian speaker of the parliament, who is coming to Berlin.
Merz accused the chancellor of not having made any concrete decisions after his determination that Russia’s war of aggression had turned the tide. “There is nothing that you seriously associate with this word “turning point” apart from new debts.”
Scholz then attacked Merz unusually sharply in his replica. Merz will not get away with always asking questions and never taking a correct position on something, said the Chancellor. “You danced through the matter here and didn’t say anything specific.” And if Merz takes a position on something, then “it gets embarrassing,” said Scholz.