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GERMANY AND POLAND

Poland asks Germany to send Patriot missiles to Ukraine

Poland's defence minister has asked Germany to ship a Patriot surface-to-air missile defence system intended for Poland to Ukraine instead to help defend itself against Russia.

Germany's Patriot missile defence system
Germany's Patriot missile defence system at a military training ground in Schwesing, Mecklenburg Western-Pomerania. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Axel Heimken

The offer follows a deadly missile blast in a Polish village last week that Warsaw believes may have been a stray Ukrainian air defence missile launched against a barrage of Russian strikes.

“I have asked Germany to send the Patriot system offered to Poland to Ukraine where it could be installed on their western border,” Mariusz Blaszczak said on Twitter late on Wednesday.

“This would allow Ukraine to protect itself against incurring more casualties and blackouts and reinforce the security of our eastern border,” he said.

READ ALSO: Germany offers to aid Polish air patrols after rocket strike

The German government earlier this week said it had reached an agreement to help Poland protect its skies following an explosion near the Ukrainian border which killed two people.

Poland and NATO have said the blast was probably caused by a stray Ukrainian air defence missile launched against a Russian strike but have said Moscow is ultimately responsible.

Germany has already sent Patriot air defence units to Slovakia, where Berlin hopes to keep them deployed until at least the end of 2023.

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UKRAINE

Germany’s Scholz says ‘consensus’ with Zelensky that Western arms do not hit Russia

Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky agrees that weapons supplied by the West will not be used to attack Russian territory, Germany's leader said in an interview Sunday.

Germany's Scholz says 'consensus' with Zelensky that Western arms do not hit Russia

“There is a consensus on this point,” Chancellor Olaf Scholz said in an interview with the weekly Bild am Sonntag.

Ukraine’s Western allies have pledged to arm it with precision rockets and missile systems, as well as tanks, as it tries to push back Russian troops in its east.

READ ALSO: Germany authorises manufacturers to send Leopard 1 tanks to Ukraine

Russian President Vladimir Putin has compared the intervention of countries such as Germany with his nation’s struggle during World War II.

“Again and again we are forced to repel the aggression of the collective West,” he said Thursday on the 80th anniversary of the Soviet victory at the Battle of Stalingrad.

But Scholz rejected the comparison.

“His words are part of a series of absurd historical comparisons that he uses to justify his attack on Ukraine”, he said.

“But nothing justifies this war.

“Together with our allies, we are supplying battle tanks to Ukraine so that it can defend itself. We have carefully weighed each delivery of weapons, in close coordination with our allies, starting with America.”

He said that such a consensus-based approach “avoids an escalation”.

READ ALSO: Germany won’t send fighter jets to Ukraine, says Scholz

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