SPAIN: Six Leopard 2A4 tanks intended for Ukraine departed Spain via ship late on Friday night, according to a naval monitoring website, in the most recent round of Western military assistance for Kyiv’s struggle against Russia’s invasion.
An eyewitness said that the German-made Leopard tanks and armoured personnel carriers were driven onto a cargo ship. The ship will travel to Poland, where it will be delivered to Ukraine, which is anticipated to launch a springtime counteroffensive. The equipment’s arrival date was not known.
This month, Spanish Defence Minister Margarita Robles announced that 10 Leopard 2A4 tanks would be sent. The remaining four are being repaired by the military. In addition, Spain has trained 15 mechanics and 40 tank crew members.
Ukraine has been relying on old Soviet-era tanks and has pleaded with the West for modern battle tanks, claiming they are essential to its ground capabilities.
In January, the US committed 31 of its Abrams tanks, while Germany pledged Leopard tanks. NATO nations have vowed to send 48 Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine.
As Ukraine braces itself for a possible resurrected Russian onslaught this spring, Western allies have increased the delivery of military weaponry to the country. After months of deliberation, Germany finally caved in to pressure from other countries and sent its tanks to Ukraine.
Now, leaked United States cables disclose that Germany, Portugal, Norway, Greece, and Finland are reportedly planning to send tanks to the invaded nation along with Spain.
Spanish media station ZDF reported that the model of tank Spain is shipping is one of the more vintage ones the nation owns. Nearly 350 Leopard 2 tanks in total are owned by the Western European nation.
The war-torn country is expected to mount a spring counteroffensive against Russia in the near future. The conflict between Russia and Ukraine has been going on for two years. How long it will take the equipment to get to Ukraine is yet unknown.