Spanish Defense Minister Margarita Robles told the German-made Leopard 2A4 tanks were tested and found to be in a “deplorable state” after years of not being used, El Mundo reported, according to European Pravda.
“We can’t give them away because they would be a risk to the people using them,” Robles explained.
In July, Spain was preparing to send to Ukraine 10 Leopard 2A4 battle tanks and 20 M113 armored personnel carriers available in the Spanish army. Experts from Ukraine visited them examine their state.
However, a review of the vehicles has revealed that their poor condition makes it impossible to repair them within a reasonable time.
The cost of these works would have fallen on Ukraine, but the Army has aborted the possibility of starting them because any repair would have an excessively high cost and would also pose a risk to its end users, sources from the government told.
Until recently, Western countries have refused to give battle tanks to Ukraine.
In June, Germany rejected the Spanish idea to send 40 Leopard tanks to Ukraine, Spiegel reported citing sources in the German government.
Apparently, that attempt to send the tanks was not an official one by Spain; according to Spiegel, Germany, whose approval was needed for the transfer, called and reminded that the step would depart from informal decision of western allies not to give Kyiv tanks.
On 16 June, French President Macron said western countries have an agreement not to give jets and tanks to Ukraine “to not enter the war with Russia.”
“We help Ukraine defend itself but don’t enter the war. It was agreed not to supply certain weapons, and Zelenskyy is aware of the agreement,” he stated on a visit to Kyiv.
Later that month, answering a question on whether NATO countries could supply tanks to Ukraine, NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg denied such a prohibition exists, saying that there is no list of “exceptions” for equipment sent to Ukraine.