Andrzej Duda made the remark at the 2023 World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, on Tuesday, Polish state news agency PAP reported.
'Ukraine needs ammunition and tanks'
The president told a briefing: “Today Ukrainians are calling mostly for ammunition, which they need badly, and secondly for tanks.”
He added: “However, Ukrainians say they don’t need so many post-Soviet tanks, because they are running out of ammunition for them. They say they need tanks used by NATO.”
Duda noted: “That’s why Ukrainians have urged us repeatedly to provide the German-made Leopard 2 tanks. And hence our declaration. And hopefully the process of collecting tanks for Ukraine will be accomplished.”
The Polish president hailed the “enormous security assistance” being provided to Ukraine by America.
He stated: “Poland has also sent much security assistance to Ukraine, but the truth is, it’s precisely this assistance that enables Ukrainian forces to thwart the Russian invasion.”
'Pressure is growing on German government to approve tank delivery to Ukraine'
Earlier in the day, Duda took part in a panel discussion entitled In Defence of Europe, alongside his Lithuanian counterpart Gitanas Nausėda, Macedonia’s Stevo Pendarovski, Belarusian opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya and Spain’s Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Albares.
During the event in Davos, the Polish president was asked about the chances of Germany allowing the re-export of Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine.
He replied: “The pressure from German politicians and the public is getting bigger, it’s growing. Hopefully all these factors will prompt this much-needed decision.”
Duda said that hopefully Ukraine’s allies would transfer “a brigade’s worth of Leopard 2 tanks” to the war-torn country.
He noted that Poland, Britain and Lithuania were helping Ukraine both financially and in terms of military aid.
“Military support for Ukraine is the key to resolving this situation,” he added.
The president also stressed that America was playing a key role in supporting Ukraine, but noted that other NATO allies should provide their share of assistance as well.
He stated: “It’s much easier for the US authorities to send another military shipment to Ukraine if they can say: ‘we are helping Ukraine together with the rest of NATO.”
Leopard 2 tanks for Ukraine
Last Wednesday, Duda promised Poland would send a company of German-made Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine.
Poland’s Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki told reporters on Monday that "for Poland to be able to re-export Leopard tanks to Ukraine, Germany, as the producer, must give its consent."
He added: “I can’t imagine Germany not giving its consent as soon as possible.”
Last Friday, a Polish presidential aide, Paweł Szrot, said that Denmark and Finland were also ready to transfer Leopard tanks to Ukraine as part of an international coalition, the PAP news agency reported.
On Sunday, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak confirmed that his country would send 14 Challenger battle tanks to Ukraine.
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said on Sunday that Ukraine could expect more deliveries of heavy weaponry from the West soon.
“The recent pledges for heavy warfare equipment are important – and I expect more in the near future,” Stoltenberg told Germany’s Handelsblatt newspaper.
In recent days, the United States, France and Germany have said they will send lighter fighting vehicles to Ukraine, according to news outlets.
Tuesday is day 328 of Russia’s war against Ukraine.
Source: PAP, gazetaprawna.pl