Berlin will provide 400 million euros in aid to kyiv via a new, essentially military package, the German Defense Minister announced on Monday, September 18. On the other hand, Germany has still not resolved the question of the long-range Taurus missiles, although they have been insistently requested by Ukraine.
The new tranche of aid notably includes different types of ammunition because it is "what Ukraine needs most", Minister Boris Pistorius told the Bild newspaper, on the eve of a meeting of Ukraine's allies. Ukraine in Germany.
“The government has not yet decided whether it will send Taurus cruise missiles,” the minister added. Ukrainian officials have been urging Germany for several months to deliver Taurus cruise missiles deemed necessary to repel the Russian army, in the midst of a counter-offensive by kyiv's troops.
“We are providing additional munitions: explosive munitions, mortar munitions, anti-mine rockets,” Boris Pistorius told the Bild daily. This new section of aid will also include armored vehicles and mine clearance systems, as well as generators in preparation for the winter, added the minister.
Regarding the Taurus missiles, Boris Pistorius stressed that “the duty of the entire federal government is to weigh every arms delivery very carefully. This requires clarifying a multitude of political, legal, military and technical aspects.” It’s “not easy,” he added. Among the outstanding questions is whether this type of weapon can be used without the support of Bundeswehr soldiers, the minister said.
Berlin has so far procrastinated on kyiv's request, also fearing that the missiles could reach Russian territory and worsen the conflict.
During the German Foreign Minister's visit to kyiv a week ago, her counterpart Dmytro Kouleba was annoyed by German hesitation: “It's only a question of time. And I don’t understand why we are wasting time,” he said, believing that Germany would eventually give the green light. Chancellor Olaf Scholz is also facing political pressure in Germany, including in his coalition, to agree to the delivery of these missiles.
Since the start of the Russian invasion, Germany has been a major contributor to support for kyiv, having provided some €22 billion to Ukraine in humanitarian, financial and military aid.
The country is hosting an international meeting under the auspices of the United States on Tuesday at the American military base in Ramstein (south) aimed at coordinating military aid from Ukraine's allies. The German minister will not be able to go there in person, Bild indicates on Monday, because he is positive for Covid-19