War in Ukraine: Zelensky does not want to meet the German president, but waits for the chancellor

From Warsaw, where he met the Polish head of state on Tuesday Andrzej DudaGerman President Frank-Walter Steinmeier wanted to go to Kiev with delegations from Poland and the Baltic countries on Wednesday to “send a strong signal of European solidarity with” Ukraine »according to the website of the daily newspaper Bild.

But Angela Merkel’s former Social Democratic (SPD) foreign minister is persona non grata on Ukrainian soil. “We all know Steinmeier’s close relations with Russia here… He is not welcome in Kiev at the moment. We’ll see if that changes,” a Ukrainian diplomat told Bild. A little humiliating for the German president. “A useless insult,” said the editors of the mirror.

Steinmeier had made his mea culpa

In recent weeks, Frank-Walter Steinmeier has come under fire, as has the former conservative chancellor, for his alleged lack of steadfastness towards Russia. He admitted in early April that he had made a “mistake” in supporting the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipelinebetween Russia and Germany.

“My Nord Stream 2 membership was clearly a mistake. We clung to bridges that Russia no longer believed in and that our partners had warned us about,” the president said, according to comments from German media.

Frank-Walter Steinmeier predicted that “Vladimir Putin would not accept the economic, political and moral ruin of his country for his imperial folly”. “Like others, I was wrong,” he concluded. The pipeline that was supposed to double Germany’s supply capacity for Russian gas has finally… suspended sine passing through Berlin in February

Volodymyr Zelensky had already made more than disparaging remarks to the German chancellor. At the NATO summit in Bucharest in April 2008, Germany spoke out against the launch of the accession process for Ukraine and Georgia, a position shared by President Sarkozy, believing that these were not sufficiently stable democracies. A few days ago, the Ukrainian then suggested that the two go to Boutcha, a city northwest of Kiev that has recently been taken over by the Ukrainians. where many civilians were killed

Olaf Scholz evasive when delivering heavy weapons

the current chancellor Olaf Scholz is also under pressure from its coalition partners. It is the Greens, traditionally very pacifist, who insist the most. After the head of diplomacy, Annalena Baerbock, her ecologist colleague Robert Habeck, the economy minister, urged the chancellor to take action. “Anything that can help the Ukrainian military now should be sent quickly,” he insisted on Tuesday.

“It would be important for the head of government to come to Kiev,” Ukrainian ambassador to Berlin Andrij Melnyk told German channels Sat.1 and ProSieben on Tuesday evening, provided he is not empty, as Boris Johnson who has promised to deliver armored vehicles and missiles to Ukraine.

But Olaf Scholz has been avoiding the delivery of heavy weapons for days, which is causing increasing annoyance even among the majority. Berlin was previously reluctant to provide defensive weapons before Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24.

Logistic problems

Technical and logistical issues still need to be resolved. Germany has exhausted its options to call on its army’s reserves, in a state of notoriously under-equipment, Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht said over the weekend.

Several weapon groups, such as Rheinmetall, have offered to make new or used tanks available, sometimes with significant delays. Liberal Party MP Marie-Agnes Strack-Zimmermann also warned against sending vehicles that require training before they can be used, such as Ukraine’s requested Marder tanks. The “soldiers must get them under control or they will become real cannon fodder,” she warned.

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