The German government is not in talks with Ukraine about the transfer or deployment of Patriot air defence systems there, said a German government spokesperson on Friday.
Germany last month offered Poland the Patriot system to help secure its airspace after a stray missile crashed and killed two people in Poland. Polish Defence Minister Mariusz Błaszczak later asked Germany to send the fire units to Ukraine instead.
"And I also think it is important to separate the discussion about those three Patriots, which Germany has offered to help to protect Polish airspace from the issue of more air defence to Ukraine. We all agree on the urgent need to help Ukraine, including with air defence systems."," said Stoltenberg in Berlin at a joint news conference with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.
However, he added, "it is important to understand that this is not only about delivering new systems but ensuring the systems that are being delivered can operate," including having enough ammunition, spare parts and maintenance.
Ukraine needs the U.S. made Patriot missile defence systems to protect its civilian infrastructure, under heavy attack by Russia, Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said on Wednesday, adding he would be working with the German government on this issue. Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev warned NATO on Tuesday against providing Ukraine with Patriot systems. Kuleba also said Ukraine would eventually become a member of NATO, saying that didn't mean nothing could be done now in that respect. "The discussions on Ukraine's NATO application should begin," he said during a press conference following a meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Bucharest.
Poland's Defence Minister Mariusz Błaszczak said on Wednesday in parliament that in order to effectively protect Poland's eastern border, it would be best to set up Patriot systems in western Ukraine. "Because from the military point of view, that's the most efficient way to shield our country," he stressed.
He added that his German counterpart Christine Lambrecht promised she would present this idea to the German government.
Źródło: TVN24 News in English, Reuters
Źródło zdjęcia głównego: MARTIN DIVISEK/PAP/EPA