Germany rules out fighter jets for Ukraine - Dispatch Weekly

January 30, 2023 - Reading time: 2 minutes

​Just days after promising to provide tanks, the German Chancellor has ruled out sending fighter jets to Ukraine.

Olaf Scholz cautioned against a bidding war for guns in an interview with German media.

To improve their capabilities, Ukraine has asked its allies to form a “fighter jet coalition.”

Last week the US stated that it would “very carefully” consider the notion of providing jets for Kyiv.

Mr. Scholz stated in an interview with Tagesspiegel that the delivery of Leopard 2 tanks produced in Germany was his primary concern.

“It just seems silly,” he remarked, “that we’ve just just decided [on sending tanks] and the next argument is shooting up in Germany.”

After weeks of pressure from friends, Germany agreed last week to give Ukraine 14 of its Leopard 2 tanks.

Following Germany’s pledge to supply the tanks, the US declared that it would send Ukraine its M1 Abrams combat vehicles.

Andrii Melnyk, the deputy foreign minister of Ukraine, has asked for the formation of a “fighter jet coalition” that would supply it with US F-16 and F-35 fighter jets, Eurofighters, Tornados, French Rafales, and Swedish Gripen jets, in addition to Eurofighters and Tornados.

Mykhailo Podolyak, a presidential advisor for Ukraine, told Ukraine’s Freedom Television Network that missiles were also required “to significantly limit the Russian army’s main armament.”

And Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, reaffirmed it in a daily video address, saying that his nation required the 185-mile-range ATACMS missile made in the US (297km).

He claimed that the missiles will aid Ukraine in foreseeing Russian assaults on cities and civilians.

Up until now, Washington has declined to supply that weapon.

Mr. Scholz reaffirmed that NATO was not at war with Russia in the interview with newspaper Tagesspiegel, adding, “We will not accept such an escalation.”

He acknowledged that he frequently interacts with Vladimir Putin, the two of them having spoken most recently in December 2022.

He added that while he had always been clear that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was wholly wrong and that only the departure of its forces would bring about a resolution, “We need to talk to one another.”

DW Staff

David Lintott is the Editor-in-Chief, leading our team of talented freelance journalists. He specializes in covering culture, sport, and society. Originally from the decaying seaside town of Eastbourne, he attributes his insightful world-weariness to his roots in this unique setting.