Ukraine LIVE: NATO 'nervous' over Russia response as Germany 'won't block' tank exports

Zelensky says Ukraine can ‘overcome the evil’ in Russia’s war

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NATO countries are showing increasing signs of “nervousness” over supplying Ukraine with weapons, the Kremlin claimed.

The comments from Moscow come in the wake of Germany’s refusal to commit to supplying Kyiv with its much sought after Leopard 2 tanks.

At a press briefing in the Kremlin, Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov said: “Of course, all countries that take part, directly or indirectly, in pumping weapons into Ukraine and raising its technological level bear responsibility” for continuing the conflict.”

The EU’s foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, insisted that Berlin would not black the export to Ukraine of Leopard tanks from member states.

Currently, any country wishing to send Leopard tanks to Kyiv from their own military arsenals, must first seek consent from the German government.

Mr Borrell said: “It seems Germany’s not going to ban the exporting of these weapons, if some EU member states who have them, want to send them.”

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Ukrainian artillery opens fire (Image: Ukraine General Staff)

John Varga

Zelensky receives tank boost after Nato head and German Defence Minister meeting

Nato’s head, Jens Stoltenberg, said he was confident that a solution would be soon reached on the supply of tanks to Ukraine.

His remarks will come as big boost to President Zelensky, who has begged the West to equip his army with heavy armour.

Following a meeting with Germany’s Defence Minister Boris Pistorius, the Nato chief said: “At this pivotal moment in the war, we must provide heavier and more advanced systems to Ukraine, and we must do it faster.

“I therefore welcome our discussion today. We discussed the issue of battle tanks.

“Consultations among allies will continue and I’m confident we will have a solution soon.”

On Monday, Russia’s long-standing Foreign Minister tried to play on the divisions that have emerged among Western leaders over the provision of tanks to Kyiv.

Sergey Lavrov told journalists during a visit to South Africa that Russia and the West were “almost” in a conventional war.

Jens Stoltenberg met with Germany’s Defence Minister on Tuesday (Image: Getty)

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German arms manufacturer said they can provide 139 Leopard tanks to Ukraine

The German automotive and arms manufacturer Rheinmetall could deliver 139 Leopard battle tanks to Ukraine.

The news comes at a time Germany is under pressure to send the tanks to Ukraine or give export permission to other Western countries to provide the tanks.

A spokesperson for Rheinmetall has said the company could deliver 29 of the Leopard 2A4 tanks as soon as April or May.

A further 22 tanks of the same make could also be transported to Ukraine by the end of 2023 or early 2024.

However, the spokesperson said the company has 88 older Lepard 1 tanks which could also be given to Ukraine but did not specify a potential time frame for delivery.

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Leopard tanks take part in training exercises (Image: Getty)

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Russia accuses Nato of arming Estonia with weapons to attack Saint Petersburg

The Russian ambassador to Estonia has accused the West of providing the Baltic state with weapons that could hit Saint Petersburg.

Vladimir Lipaev made his remarks during an interview on the Soloviev Live TV channel.

He told the Kremlin propagandist: “The Anglo-Saxons had an interest in creating an anti-Russian outpost here to put pressure on the Russian Federation.

“And we are talking not only about economic, political, cultural, but also military pressure.

“Estonia is actively arming, it’s not clear why, types of conventional weapons that are capable of targeting Saint Petersburg.

“A medium-range anti-missile defence system is being created.”

Russia has accused Nato of arming Estonia with weapons (Image: Getty)

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RAF Chinooks deployed on Russia’s doorstep in show of strength against Putin

The Royal Air Force have deployed Chinook helicopters to Estonia in a show of NATO strength against Vladimir Putin.

The Aviation Task Force 3 has travelled to the Ämari Air Base with three Chinooks from 18(B) Squadron, RAF Odiham as part of Operation PELEDA.

About 100 people have been deployed with the aircraft, including teams from Joint Helicopter Support Squadron, Tactical Supply Wing, 244 Signal Squadron, and other enablers from the RAF and Army.

The RAF shared news of the deployment on their Twitter page, posting: “RAF Chinooks deployed to Estonia last week to support the UK-led NATO Enhanced Forward Presence.

“The Chinooks will be working closely with Estonian Defence Forces to increase interoperability and capability.”

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The Royal Air Force have deployed Chinook helicopters to Estonia (Image: Getty)

John Varga

Good morning

Good morning from London. I’m John Varga and I’ll be bringing you all the latest developments on the Ukraine war.

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