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Germans censure Berlin government for sending weapons to Ukraine

Service members of the Ukrainian Armed Forces gather near BM-21 “Grad” multiple rocket launchers during tactical military exercises at a shooting range in the Kherson region, Ukraine, January 19, 2022. (File photo via Reuters)

Hundreds of people have demonstrated in Germany to express their strong dissent against the move by Berlin to intervene in the ongoing war in Ukraine through providing military and financial support for the ex-Soviet country.

Participants in the capital Berlin filled the streets on Saturday, carrying banners condemning arms supplies to Ukraine as well as nuclear weapons.

Since the onset of Russia’s “special military operation” in Ukraine on February 24, the United States and its European allies have unleashed a flood of advanced weapons to Kiev plus financial support to boost its military to fend off Russian forces.

Germany, for its part, has offered substantial support to Ukraine, sending billions of dollars in military aid and heavy weaponry, a move in line with the United States’ path. Washington has so far allocated nearly seven billion dollars to military assistance for the ex-Soviet country. However, Germany has been criticized, mainly by Kiev, for long delays in sending German weapons to Ukraine, compared to the speedy deliveries of US arms. 

In an interview with CBS News on the talk show “Face the Nation” broadcast Sunday, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz defended Berlin’s delays in delivering weapons to Kiev, saying the delays were due to the need to train Ukrainian soldiers in Germany. “We will always see that Germany is one of the countries that is doing the most, because what we are sending now is the most sophisticated technology you can use,” Scholz said in the interview that was conducted Thursday on the sidelines of the NATO summit in Madrid.

Russia has time and again said the West’s flood of weapons will not force Moscow to end the operation before achieving its objectives. The Kremlin has also warned that the unprecedented sanctions against Russia, plus the flow of arms into Ukraine, would only prolong the war.

Scholz also acknowledged that Russian President Vladimir Putin “will be able to continue with the war really a long time.”

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