December 04
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The U.S. and Germany are still unable to send battle tanks to Ukraine. Officials are struggling with logistical problems and Europe's own defense needs, and are worried about escalating tensions with Russia, Bloomberg writes, citing sources.

Ukraine's allies have been negotiating at various levels in recent weeks over whether to send NATO standard tanks such as Abrams and Leopards to Ukraine, but no decision has been made, the sources said.

According to the State Department spokesman, providing Kyiv with modern battle tanks would require long-term training, maintenance and support. He said international efforts to supply Ukraine are focused on sending weapons that the country can use quickly and effectively.

On the European side, allies have a limited number of modern tanks and do not want to leave the North Atlantic Alliance unarmed in light of tensions with Russia.

According to one source, German officials have similar concerns about training and maintaining their Leopard tanks. Ukraine's requests focus on older versions of the modern tanks, which would reduce any risk of inadvertently transferring technology to Russia if captured and would not require lengthy training.

Nevertheless, Chancellor Olaf Scholz is unlikely to give the green light to transfer the Leopards to Ukraine without similar steps from the United States and other NATO allies, another source said.

Scholz has repeatedly spoken of his concerns about the risk of a wider war. Scholz echoed that stance in a New York Times interview published Sunday, saying it was a very dangerous war.

In April, NATO nations agreed to begin sending Ukraine more modern standard equipment to replace Soviet-era weapons as their stockpiles began to run low, and they have since begun training Ukrainian forces in the use of those weapons. But they have been reluctant to supply battle tanks and infantry fighting vehicles.

About a dozen European countries, including Spain, Greece and Poland, use Leopard tanks, but they require German permission to ship them into the conflict zone. According to one source, even if some kind of agreement can be found, it is unlikely that Ukraine will receive the modern tanks in the quantity it has requested.

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