Lhe German Chancellor, Olaf Scholz, is expected in kyiv for “practical decisions” including the delivery of heavy weapons. Objective: to support Ukraine in the face of the Russian offensive. “Our president is waiting for the chancellor to take practical decisions immediately, including the delivery of weapons,” Oleksiï Arestovitch, adviser to President Volodymyr Zelensky, told German public broadcaster ZDF.
In particular, the fate of Mariupol and the population in the east of the country “depends on the German weapons that we can obtain”, but which do not come, underlines this presidential adviser. He noted, however, the progress of Berlin which had “started with the refusal” to arrive at “the discussion of the supply of heavy weapons”. Berlin already delivers defensive weapons to Ukraine, but Olaf Scholz has been under pressure for several days, even within his majority, to give the green light to sending offensive equipment, in particular armored vehicles.
Tensions between Germany and Ukraine
The Ministers of Foreign Affairs and the Economy, environmental heavyweights of the government, called on the Chancellor to decide in favor of these deliveries. Time is running out, however, because “every minute a tank does not come, it is our children who die, who are raped, who are killed”, asserted Oleksiï Arestovitch. The German authorities have seen “the terrible images” of the conflict, which recall, according to him, the destruction of Berlin in 1945: what the Russian army is doing in Ukraine “is not different”.
These statements come against a backdrop of tensions between Germany and Ukraine, after the refusal on Tuesday of President Zelensky to receive German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier who wanted to go to kyiv with delegations from Poland and the Baltic countries. The German head of state is criticized for his diplomacy of rapprochement with Russia when he was Angela Merkel’s foreign minister. Vladimir Putin’s Russia is concentrating its attacks on the city of Mariupol, a strategic port in the Sea of Azov besieged for more than 40 days and where thousands of civilian victims have been counted by the Ukrainian authorities.