Germany Will Allow Export Of Tanks To Ukraine If US Also Sends Tanks
BERLIN - Germany says that they will be allowing the export of its tanks to Ukraine on the condition that the United States also sends tanks to the country. If Germany decides to do so, other NATO-allied countries say they will follow suit. Britain already plans to send them. The U.S. Coast Guard is tracking a Russian vessel off Hawaii.
Although NATO allies across Europe have German-made Leopard tanks on the field, they require permission from Germany before they can begin sending them to Ukraine.
NATO allies have around 2,000 of German-made Leopard tanks, which are widely considered one of the most advanced tanks in the world.
Polish President Andrzej Duda spoke at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Wednesday and voiced concern that Russia is preparing an offensive in Ukraine within the next few months, and that it's important that Ukraine receives modern tanks and missiles to defend themselves against the expected renewed territory push.
Both Finland and Poland have already said they would be sending Leopard tanks if they get prior approval from Germany first.
Although Washington is expected to approve sending the eight-wheeled Stryker armored fighting vehicles to Ukraine, there has been no confirmation that the United States has decided to send tanks to the region.
Ukraine has been asking Washington for M1 Abrams main battle tanks, but Pentagon policy advisor Colin Kahl said that the Pentagon is not ready to send such complex weaponry to Ukraine.
Kahl said, "I just don't think we're there yet. The Abrams tank is a very complicated piece of equipment. It's expensive. It's hard to train on. It has a jet engine".
Video: British Army's Challenger 2 Tank, Planned Shipment To Ukraine
The British Ministry of Defense has released a video of the Challenger 2 battle tank that the country is planning to ship to Ukraine to aid in defending the country from attacks by Russia.
Britain is planning to send 14 Challenger 2 tanks, along with ammunition to Ukraine, according to the UK Foreign Minister.
British Secretary of State James Cleverly said, “We believe the introduction of NATO main battle tanks will be decisive” in expected fighting this spring".
The British Ministry of Defense statement said, "The Challenger 2 is the [British Army's] main battle tank and has been successfully employed across several conflict areas from Eastern Europe to operations in Iraq. The Challenger 2 is an immensely capable piece of equipment to fulfill a broad range of tasks required."
Russia Responds To Announcement Britain Will Send Challenger 2 Tanks To Ukraine
The Kremlin has responded to a statement by the British Prime Minister that the UK will be sending a squadron of 14 Challenger 2 tanks to Ukraine, saying that the tanks "will burn".
When asked about the British tanks, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, “They are using this country [Ukraine] as a tool to achieve their anti-Russian goals. These tanks are burning and will burn just like the rest".
He said that the weaponry supplied to Ukraine will not change the situation on the ground, but are attempts to draw out the conflict, and will only bring "more troubles" to Ukraine.
On Russian state television Rossiya 1 (Channel 1), the presenter Vladimir Solovyev said "De facto, Britain has entered the war. I consider Britain is now a legitimate target for us.”
After those comments, lawmaker Andrei Gurulyev discussed on the show that Russia should resume nuclear testing so the whole world "shuddered", and said, “If there is no London, then we would have victory".
He added, “On Britain, I said six months ago that it should be wiped from the face of the earth.”
UK Government: PM accelerates Ukraine support ahead of the anniversary of Putin’s war
UK GOVERNMENT: The Prime Minister has announced the UK will send tanks and self-propelled guns to aid the Ukrainian offensive.
- The Prime Minister has announced the UK will send tanks and self-propelled guns to aid the Ukrainian offensive
- As the first anniversary of the war approaches, the PM has stressed the need for an international strategy to break the stalemate
- This week the Foreign and Defence Secretaries will meet counterparts to galvanise international action
The Prime Minister is set to accelerate the UK’s diplomatic and military support to Ukraine in the weeks ahead in a bid to push Russia further back and secure a lasting peace.
A flurry of UK diplomatic activity will take place across the globe this week after the Prime Minister directed senior ministers to drive international action as we approach the first anniversary of the full-scale invasion of Ukraine in late February.
The Prime Minister has already committed to match or exceed the UK’s defence support for Ukraine in 2023 and he instructed ministers and officials this week to ensure we are being proactive as possible across the full spectrum of our support.
UK defence and security officials believe a window has opened up where Russia is on the back foot due to resupply issues and plummeting morale. The Prime Minister is therefore encouraging allies to deploy their planned support for 2023 as soon as possible to have maximum impact.
Sending Challenger 2 tanks to Ukraine is the start of a gear change in the UK’s support. A squadron of 14 tanks will go into the country in the coming weeks after the Prime Minister told President Zelenskyy that the UK would provide additional support to aid Ukraine’s land war.
Around 30 AS90s, which are large, self-propelled guns, operated by five gunners, are expected to follow. The Defence Secretary will set out further details of this support in the House of Commons on Monday.
The Prime Minister has tasked the Defence Secretary with bringing together European allies to ensure the surge of global military support is as strategic and coordinated as possible. The Defence Secretary will travel to Estonia and Germany this week to work with NATO allies and other international partners to this end.
Meanwhile, the Foreign Secretary will travel to the United States later this week to discuss how the UK and US can leverage our position as leading supporters of Ukraine to galvanise further international action.
He will also travel to Canada – another of Ukraine’s staunchest supporters – to discuss closer coordination on international sanctions and our coordinated effort to boost our support to Ukraine.
A Downing Street spokesperson said: "As the people of Ukraine approach their second year living under relentless Russian bombardment, the Prime Minister is dedicated to ensuring Ukraine wins this war.Alongside his closest military advisors, he has analysed the military picture, looked at the strategic impact of the UK’s support and identified a window where he thinks the UK and its allies can have maximum impact".
He added, "The Prime Minister is clear that a long and static war only serves Russia’s ends. That’s why he and his ministers will be speaking to our allies across the world in the days and weeks ahead to ramp up pressure on Putin and secure a better future for Ukraine".
In the lead-up to the one-year anniversary of the invasion, the Prime Minister will seek to demonstrate the UK’s power as an international catalyst with influence across NATO, the G7, the Joint Expeditionary Force and elsewhere.
He will work with partners to put Ukraine in the strongest possible place to enter future peace negotiations from a position of military, economic and diplomatic strength and secure a strong and lasting peace.
Shoigu: Russia Making Major Changes Due To United States "Proxy War" In Ukraine
Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said that in response to the "proxy war" in Ukraine by the United States, Russia will be making "major changes" including strengthening its naval, strategic missile, and aerospace forces from now to 2026.
Russia will also be making major administrative reforms in the midst of NATO-allied countries sending heavier weaponry to Ukraine, including offensive weapons such as tanks.
"Only by strengthening the key structural components of the armed forces is it possible to guarantee the military security of the state and protect new entities and critical facilities of the Russian Federation," Shoigu said.
Poseidon Nuclear-Capable Underwater Drones Manufactured By Russia
The "first batch" of Poseidon nuclear-capable underwater drones for the Project 09852 special-purpose nuclear-powered submarine Belgorod has been manufactured, according to Russian state news TASS, citing the Russian defense industry.
TASS cited the source as saying, "The first batch of Poseidon ammunition has been manufactured and will be soon delivered to special-purpose nuclear-powered submarine Belgorod".
The Russian state news agency said that various trials of "core components" of the Poseidon underwater drones have been successfully completed, including the nuclear power unit.
TASS describes the Project 09852 special-purpose submarine Belgorod as being designed to carry out "diverse" research tasks and rescue operations and is equipped with deep-water rescue and unmanned submersibles onboard.
Additionally, the report said that through 2027 shipbuilders will be delivering three "special-purpose" nuclear-powered submarines to the Russian Navy.
Coast Guard, partners tracking Russian vessel off Hawaiian Coast, Suspected Intelligence Gathering
US COAST GUARD: "HONOLULU — In recent weeks, the U.S. Coast Guard has continued to monitor a Russian vessel, believed to be an intelligence gathering ship, off the coast of the Hawaiian Islands.
While foreign military vessels may transit freely through the U.S. economic exclusive zone (EEZ), as per customary international laws, foreign-flagged military vessels have often been observed operating and loitering within Coast Guard District Fourteen’s area of response.
The Coast Guard continues to coordinate with Department of Defense partners, providing updates to foreign vessel movements and activities and to appropriately meet presence with presence to encourage international maritime norms.
“The U.S. Coast Guard is currently monitoring the Russian vessel operating in the vicinity of Hawaii,” said Cmdr. Dave Milne, chief of External Affairs. “As part of our daily operations, we track all vessels in the Pacific area through surface and air assets and joint agency capabilities.
The Coast Guard operates in accordance with international laws of the sea to ensure all nations can do the same without fear or contest. This is especially critical to secure freedom of movement and navigation throughout the Blue Pacific.”
As a part of the Department of Homeland Security, the Coast Guard is the lead federal agency for at-sea enforcement of U.S. fisheries laws; additionally, the Coast Guard assists in the enforcement of laws on the high seas subject to the jurisdiction of the United States’ exclusive economic zone.
Law and treaty enforcement account for approximately 1/3 of the Coast Guard's annual budget.
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