Defence chiefs fail to resolve dispute on whether to send German tanks to Ukraine

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By Euronews
German Defence Minister Boris Pistorius leaves after a press conference during the meeting of the 'Ukraine Defense Contact Group' at Ramstein Air Base in Germany.
German Defence Minister Boris Pistorius leaves after a press conference during the meeting of the 'Ukraine Defense Contact Group' at Ramstein Air Base in Germany.   -   Copyright  Michael Probst/Copyright 2023 The AP. All rights reserved

Defence leaders meeting at a US air base in Germany on Friday failed to resolve divisions over providing advanced battle tanks to Ukraine after more than five hours of discussions about sending more military aid to the embattled country in its war with Russia.

The defence minister of Poland, which has pledged a company of 14 Leopard tanks on condition that other countries also supply them, said 15 countries that have the German-made Leopards discussed the issue but no decisions were made.

Polish Defense Minister Mariusz Blaszczak called the meeting a “good discussion among allies” and said the matter would be discussed again at future talks.

Though the tank debate was unresolved, Germany’s new defence minister suggested the issue was moving forward.

"We will make our decisions as soon as possible,” Boris Pistorius said. 

Germany would need to consent for the tanks to be given to Ukraine, which is not a member of NATO. Despite pleas from Ukrainian officials, Germany has so far resisted mounting pressure to quickly supply Leopard 2 tanks, or at least clear the way for other countries, such as Poland, to deliver them from their own stocks.

Ukrainian leaders have criticised Germany for what they see as holding back critical assistance in the war. 

For more watch Euronews' report in the video above.