Russia is moving more troops to the border with north-eastern Ukraine

Scholz criticizes the debate about the delivery of fighter jets

Chancellor Olaf Scholz has criticized the debate over the delivery of fighter jets to Ukraine. “It is idiosyncratic that this debate is being held. Some people have to ask themselves: Why is he asking the question when it’s about helping the Ukrainians,” said Scholz on Sunday evening (local time) at a press conference in Santiago de Chile. A serious debate is now necessary and not “an outbidding competition (…), in which perhaps domestic political motives are in the foreground instead of supporting Ukraine”.

In an issue as important as arms deliveries, it must be about the matter and rational considerations, emphasized Scholz. He recalled that shortly after the war began, he and US President Joe Biden ruled out no-fly zones because that would have led to a conflict between Russia and NATO. “Such nonsensical requests” as the deployment of ground troops were also rejected. “Everything has really been said about this, including me,” emphasized Scholz.

The discussion last year about a no-fly zone over Ukraine was about the fact that this could only be enforced if NATO provided its own fighter jets. Scholz and Biden rejected that. However, the current discussion is about making combat aircraft available to Ukraine, which would then be flown by Ukrainian pilots.

Ukraine is demanding fighter jets, and the United States has not fundamentally ruled out a delivery. The SPD leader Saskia Esken did not fundamentally rule out the delivery of combat aircraft on Sunday in the ARD.

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