Defence Ministers of Greece and Germany discuss supply of infantry fighting vehicles to Ukraine

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Greek Defence Minister Nikos Panagiotopoulos had a telephone conversation with his German counterpart Christine Lambrecht on 9 January, during which they discussed the situation in Ukraine and military assistance.

Source: European Pravda

Details: The Greek Defence Ministry said that they discussed "issues related to the implementation of the agreement on the transfer of BMP-1 infantry fighting vehicles (IFV) to Ukraine to replace them with German-made Marder IFVs".

No other details of the conversation are given, and the German side has not yet commented on it. However, it probably concerned reports that Greece is ready to give up Marder IFVs in favour of Ukraine, which may speed up the delivery of these armoured vehicles to Kyiv.

Background:  Athens and Berlin agreed on a "circular exchange" scheme in 2022, according to which the Greek side will transfer 40 Soviet BMP-1 IFVs in exchange for the same number of more modern German Marder vehicles.

As of now, Greece has received the first 14 Marder vehicles from Germany and supplied Ukraine with 20 BMPs.

On 5 January, after a conversation between Joe Biden and Olaf Scholz, it became known that Germany plans to transfer Marder IFVs to Ukraine. There are about 40 IFVs, which should arrive in Ukraine by the end of the first quarter of 2023.

Oleksii Makeiev, Ambassador of Ukraine to Germany, said that the decision by the German government to supply Marder infantry fighting vehicles might lay the groundwork for the provision of Leopard 2 main battle tanks.

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