Germany to deliver seven self-propelled howitzers to Ukraine
Germany will deliver seven self-propelled howitzers to Ukraine, making it five artillery systems the Dutch government already pledged, German Defence Minister Christine Lambrecht said on Friday.
Germany reversed its long-held policy of not sending heavy weapons to war zones last week following pressure at home and abroad for it to help Ukraine from Russian attacks.
Lambrecht and her chief of defence, general Eberhard Zorn said, “The heavy weapons will come out of the Bundeswehr inventories and be delivered as soon as they emerge from maintenance over the next weeks.”
“The training of the first group of some 20 Ukrainian troops on the Panzerhaubitze 2000 is expected to kick off next week in the German town of Idar-Oberstein,” Zorn said.
Ukraine’s pleas for heavy weapons have intensified since Moscow has turned its heaviest firepower on the country’s east and south, after failing to take the capital Kyiv.
Berlin will also supply a first ammunition package for the howitzers built by German defence company KMW, with further ammunition purchases to be handled directly between Kyiv and the company.
READ ALSO: Russia warns West against assault on Russia by Ukraine