Germany has approved the shipment of additional Leopard 1 battle tanks, which will be added to the large number of combat vehicles Berlin committed to provide to Ukraine last week.
A spokeswoman announced on Friday that Olaf Scholz’s ministry had approved an export license for the 1960s-era German tanks that were replaced with Leopard 2 tanks in the German military in 2003. They stated that additional information would be supplied in the coming days and weeks.
According to Der Spiegel, the cargo comprised 29 Leopard 1 battle tanks being rebuilt by two factories. The proposal was initially revealed by the Süddeutsche Zeitung on Friday morning. Once the tanks have been rebuilt, they might be delivered from the industrial stockpiles.
After weeks of hesitance, Berlin confirmed last week that it would make 14 Leopard 2A6 tanks available for Ukraine’s war effort and grant partner countries permission to re-export additional battle tanks to Kyiv, overcoming qualms about sending heavy weaponry that Ukraine considers essential for repelling the Russian invasion.
Sweden would provide air defense missiles and launch launchers for Germany’s Iris-T systems, according to reports.
During a state visit on Thursday, Robert Habeck, the German vice chancellor and economic minister, met with Johan Forssell, the Swedish minister of foreign trade, to discuss this combined package, according to a government official.
Sweden’s application to join NATO, which was submitted in response to Russia’s invasion, is still pending despite Turkey’s threats to veto the application.