Kiev residents are disappointed by Germany’s delay in sending Panther tanks to Ukraine
Kiev residents were appalled by Germany’s reluctance to send its Panther 2 tanks to Ukraine ahead of Russia’s spring offensive.
They spoke after a high-level meeting of Kyiv’s military supporters at Ramstein air base in Germany ended in a deadlock over tank deliveries to Ukraine on Friday.
People in the Ukrainian capital told CNN about Western support for the war against Russia. “Well, thank you very much for the self-propelled artillery units and howitzers. It’s a good deterrent and we need it,” said a Ukrainian anti-aircraft gunner known as “Sgt.”
“On the other hand, they don’t want to give us offensive weapons like tanks. They expect us to liberate our territories, but they fear that we will go further and enter the territory of the Russian Federation.”
Nikita Matyushenko, an 18-year-old college student, told CNN she thought Ukraine’s allies were playing “political games.” CNN has reported a standoff between the US and Germany, which said the US would only allow Kyiv to send its Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine if it provided Kyiv with its M1 Abrams tank. The US and German defense ministers later denied any “connections”.
“Now the West is doing more. At the beginning of the war, it wasn’t enough. They didn’t want to give us some weapons or they gave us very little. But now it’s much better. In my opinion, although very slowly. I’m sure they can do it faster. I hope so, but the bureaucracy interferes,” said Matiushenko, whose father recently returned from fighting in Bagmut with the Ukrainian armed forces.
“I understand very well how much we need long-range and offensive weapons,” he said.
Natalia Chihachuk, a 50-year-old beautician, said she fears the war won’t end soon. “In my opinion, we don’t get enough help. They give what they want and can give. So it won’t be at the right time,” he said, acknowledging that Ukraine doesn’t always get exactly what it wants. Ukraine should “say ‘thank you’. “Without help, we would have had more problems from the start,” he said.
“Now we work not only for our own security, but also to protect the interests of other countries. That’s why Western countries should be more interested in giving us more help,” General Officer Artur Myroniuk, 27, told CNN.
Ukraine’s allies should soon provide better air defense systems, Myroniuk said. He pointed to a January 14 missile attack on a residential building in Dnipro that killed 45 people and wounded dozens more.
“We all saw what happened in Dnipro recently. We need help with air defense because we saw children die in Ukraine,” Myroniuk said.