Polish leader slams Germany for supporting Ukraine – POLITICO
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Germany has not backed Ukraine, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki told POLITICO on Friday, lashing out at Berlin as Europe seeks ways to continue arming Kiev.
In an interview following the EU leaders’ summit in Brussels, Poland’s conservative leader said the EU’s biggest economy must step up and lead.
Germany should “send more weapons, send more ammunition and give more money to Ukraine, because it is by far the richest and biggest country,” Morawiecki said.
“They weren’t as generous as they should have been,” the Polish prime minister said. “I always encourage them to do that.”
Over the past year, Eastern EU capitals have repeatedly urged their Western counterparts to act more quickly to support Ukraine and provide more advanced weapons and equipment. And while powerful countries like Germany and France note that they have given Ukraine huge stockpiles of weapons, vehicles and money, their efforts have still left some eastern counterparts unmoved.
Warsaw, which has strained relations with Berlin, has been particularly vocal.
“I’m not attacking them,” Morawiecki said, “I’m just stating the obvious.”
Berlin also provides most of the money the EU uses to help compensate other countries for arms donations to Ukraine. But Morawiecki said he was unimpressed with the figure, calling it “proportionate” to Germany’s size.
The prime minister acknowledged that Berlin had made policy changes, including massive investments to modernize its military and overturn a ban on sending weapons into a war zone. In particular, Morawiecki pointed to Germany’s decision to send Leopard battle tanks to Ukraine.
“Three months ago Germany said it was not possible – now it is possible,” he said, “so they are changing their approach.”
The Polish leader also pointed to Germany’s past energy policies, which relied heavily on imported Russian gas, saying they had led Europe down a dangerous path.
“By their very misguided oil and gas policy towards Russia, they are jointly responsible for what is happening, for this mess in the energy market,” he said.
“Germany made this dramatic mistake of being completely dependent in its business model on Russia with fossil fuels,” he said. “And we cried for them. We asked them not to.
The Prime Minister said he had discussed his views on German support for Ukraine with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.
“I have this conversation from time to time,” he said. “I ask him for such great support,” he said. “That’s all I can do.”