| 19 April 2024, Friday |

Germany’s defense fund not enough, sending fighter jets ‘ruled out’: defense minister

In an interview with Sueddeutsche Zeitung that was published on Friday, Germany’s new defense minister Boris Pistorius stated that the country’s 100 billion euro ($108 billion) special defense fund was no longer sufficient to meet all of its needs.

Germany will also need to increase its yearly normal defense spending from the present level of roughly 50 billion euros, according to Pistorius, who entered office last week after his predecessor announced his resignation.

Germany also needs to replenish its military hardware stocks, including replacements for the 14 Leopard tanks that Berlin agreed to send to Ukraine to help repel Russia’s invasion, the new defense chief said.

Germany’s decision to suspend compulsory military service in 2011 was a mistake, he added, saying he was hesitant to place a burden upon young generations but was open to discussing a new model to strengthen the relationship between citizens and the state.

Asked whether Germany would sent fighter jets to Ukraine, the next request from Kyiv after Germany approved earlier this week the delivery of Leopard 2 tanks, Pistorius said this was “ruled out”.

“Fighter aircrafts are much more complex systems than main battle tanks and have a completely different range and firepower. We would be venture into dimensions that I would currently warn against,” Pistorius said in the interview.

  • Reuters