Meeting in Berlin: Ukrainian head of government calls for more heavy weapons from Scholz

During his visit to Berlin, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Schmyhal asked for more heavy weapons to be delivered to his country.

Meeting in Berlin: Ukrainian head of government calls for more heavy weapons from Scholz

During his visit to Berlin, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Schmyhal asked for more heavy weapons to be delivered to his country. According to his office, at a meeting with Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier on Sunday, Schmyhal emphasized how important it is for his country that arms deliveries be "increased". The reconstruction of Ukraine was also a central topic at meetings with Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Federal Development Minister Svenja Schulze (both SPD).

Ukraine hopes that Germany will play a "leading role" in air defense against Russian attackers. The Type 2000 self-propelled howitzers supplied by Germany and the Mars II rocket launchers had "proven themselves on the battlefield," Schmygal said at the meeting with the Federal President in Bellevue Castle. "We hope that deliveries of heavy weapons can be expanded," he added.

At the meeting with Steinmeier, he also "thanked the solidarity with the Ukrainians and the support," Schmyhal wrote on Twitter - and emphasized: "We will win."

During the hour-long meeting, Steinmeier assured the guest from Kyiv that Germany would "continue to stand in reliable solidarity with Ukraine," said the President's spokeswoman. The two politicians also exchanged views on "help with the reconstruction of Ukraine".

After meeting Steinmeier, Schmyhal was received by Scholz with military honours. Scholz and Schmyhal exchanged views on the military, humanitarian and economic situation in Ukraine, as announced by government spokesman Steffen Hebestreit. The Chancellor assured that Germany would not let up in supporting Ukraine militarily, but also politically, financially and humanitarianally.

Scholz referred to an expert conference that Germany would hold during its G7 presidency together with EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on October 25 in Berlin. With a view to Ukraine's EU candidate status, Scholz encouraged the Ukrainian Prime Minister in his reform course. Reforms in the areas of the rule of law and the judicial system are particularly important in order to attract investment for reconstruction.

Schmyhal stressed on Twitter that reconstruction in the "liberated areas" of Ukraine must "start as soon as possible". During the meeting with Federal Development Minister Schulze, Schmyhal said she thanked Germany for the EUR 200 million in aid that Germany had promised to look after internally displaced persons. Part of the money should be used for business start-ups by internally displaced persons. According to estimates by the United Nations, there are around eight million internally displaced persons in Ukraine.

After her meeting with Schmyhal, Schulze promised "to set the right course for a sustainable, reform-oriented reconstruction of Ukraine towards the EU". This requires "staying power".

Before the international reconstruction conference planned for the end of October in Lugano, the minister announced that she would meet with representatives of civil society, business and science in Ukraine to discuss plans for sustainable development.

The funds from Schulze's Ministry for Ukraine are to be increased to 406 million euros at the reconstruction conference in Lugano. The Budget Committee of the Bundestag still has to decide on the exact use of the funds.

Schmyhal is expected in Brussels on Monday. He takes part in talks with the EU there. The Association Council is chaired by Schmyhal and EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell. The main topics are stronger cooperation and EU support for Kyiv against the Russian war of aggression. Schmyhal will then open an exhibition on Russian war crimes in Brussels and take part in a panel discussion.

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