BERLIN – The German government has earmarked an extra 1 billion euros ($1.03 billion)from its 2023 budget to support Ukraine, with money allocated to defending against Russian cyberattacks and collecting evidence of war crimes, a document showed.
The extra allocation comes amid rows over whether Germany should step up its provision of military aid to Ukraine, which says it needs offensive battlefield weapons, including tanks, to take the fight to the Russian army.
The earmark is a win for the Greens, the coalition party which has been the strongest advocate of military support for Ukraine since Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the invasion in February.
Germany is the third largest military donor to Ukraine, though far behind the United States, whose weapons deliveries have been crucial to the Ukrainian armed forces’ battlefield successes, which culminated in Friday’s recapture of Kherson, the largest city Russia took.
“The Ukraine budget makes clear that our support goes far beyond the important and necessary weapons deliveries,” said Robin Wagener, the Green legislator who chairs the parliamentary Ukraine group.
“We are investing massively in peace in Europe and Ukraine.”
Some of the money will support teams recording evidence of human rights abuses and war crimes, including those uncovered in the wake of Russian withdrawals.
Extra money will also go to supporting civil society in the broader region, including protection of journalists in Belarus, Russia and Ukraine.
($1 = 0.9695 euros)