Scholz adamant on non-transfer of long-range Taurus missiles to Kyiv

Olaf Scholz
Olaf Scholz

Berlin still has no plans to transfer long-range Taurus missiles to Ukraine, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz reiterated at the April 24 press conference with British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.

“Regarding these weapons systems, my decision has not changed,” he said, adding that Berlin has provided EUR 28 billion (nearly $30 billion) worth of military aid since the beginning of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, making Germany the second largest supplier of military aid to Kyiv after the United States.

Scholz also mentioned Berlin’s donation of the advanced Iris-T and Patriot air defense systems to the Ukrainian Armed Forces and called on Western countries to “massively strengthen” the war-torn country’s air defense capabilities.

Earlier, German opposition parties urged British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to persuade German Chancellor Olaf Scholz to provide Ukraine with long-range Taurus missiles.

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The issue of supplying Taurus missiles to Ukraine

Ukraine is asking its partners for long-range weapons to be able to strike targets deep inside Ukraine’s Russian-occupied territory.

Some countries have already taken this step: the UK and France have transferred Storm Shadow cruise missiles.

Germany, which has about 600 Taurus cruise missiles, has demurred.

Berlin is not refusing to provide Taurus to Ukraine, but isn’t ready to do so at the moment, German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius said in September 2023.

The reason could be the wavering of German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, who has expressed concerns that Kyiv could use the weapons to attack Russian territory. He is also concerned that the move could lead to an “escalation” of the war.

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Ukraine has repeatedly said that it will not use Western long-range missiles to strike Russian territory.

The German parliament twice failed to support a call to transfer Taurus missiles to Ukraine.

Only 178 out of 666 deputies voted in favor of the idea on Jan. 17.

The German parliament voted to supply Ukraine with “long-range weapons” on Feb. 22 but did not specifically mention Taurus missiles.

Long-range Taurus missiles would not tip the war in favor of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, the head of the special task force on Ukraine at the German Defense Ministry, Christian Freudig, stated on Feb. 5.

Scholz is not afraid of Russian dictator Vladimir Putin, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock, said on March 29 regarding the issue of providing Taurus missiles to Ukraine.

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