‘I’m Helping’: Germany Donates Three 1970s-Era Tanks to Ukraine

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The German government has delivered three Gepard anti-aircraft tanks to Ukraine, a considerable step up from its donation earlier in the war of 5,000 helmets.

The three armoured vehicles, first fielded in the 1970s and withdrawn from German service over a decade ago, were promised to aid the Ukrainian war effort against Russia by the German government and Chancellor Olaf Scholz three months ago and have now been delivered to the country.

The ‘flakpanzers’ are equipped with anti-aircraft guns but come as German companies still give billions of euros to Russia to buy natural gas to power the German economy, the Italian newspaper Corriere Della Sera reports.

According to the newspaper, Italy has also promised weapons to Ukraine but weapons have been few compared to the amount of cash Italy, another country reliant on Russian energy, has given to Ukraine’s enemy in the conflict.

A total of 15 Gepard tanks were supposed to have been already delivered to Ukraine by mid-July, with a total of 30 tanks being promised to Ukraine by the German government.

The delay, according got German broadcaster MDR, has been due to a lack of ammunition supply as only 59,000 rounds were available for the tanks, which fire at a rapid pace and the amount was deemed to be too little for the weapons to be effective in combat.

The delivery of the tanks come as German Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser and Social Affairs Minister Hubertus Heil visited the city of Irpin earlier this week and Minister Faeser stated that the government was looking to expand its cooperation with Ukraine in prosecuting war criminals.

Many of the weapons sent to Ukraine have been smaller arms, including rifles and anti-tank weapons such as the British-Swedish NLAW and the U.S.-made FGM-148 Javelin.

However, some have expressed concerns that weapons from the war may make it to Europe, and may fall into the hands of criminal gangs. “There is a high risk of flows of illegal weapons entering Sweden,” Swedish Inspector Gunnar Appelgren warned in June.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)breitbart.com.

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