Speaking at a joint press conference with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and the head of the European Council Charles Michel, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said she believes Ukraine’s allies should give it western-style battle tanks.
“I have said many times since the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine: I think that Ukraine should get all the necessary military equipment they need and they can handle to defend the homeland. This means of course, advanced air defence systems, but also other types of advanced military equipment, as long as it is necessary to defend Ukraine,” said von der Leyen, answering questions about her position on Western-style tanks for Ukraine, European Pravda reported.
The statement came amid a major policy shift, after the US, France, and Germany agreed to deliver IFVs to Ukraine.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz is now facing calls from Bundestag lawmakers to supply heavier tanks, like the Leopard tanks, but has insisted he will only move in concert with his allies.
On Tuesday, 10 January, the EU and NATO signed a declaration to enhance their cooperation amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine.