President Volodymyr Zelenskyy launched a “call to speed up” decision-making on aid to Ukraine in Davos on Wednesday, with Germany, for example, reluctant to authorize the delivery of Leopard tanks to its country.
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“Tyranny advances faster than democracies,” he lamented during a videoconference intervention at the World Economic Forum meeting in Switzerland this week.
“The mobilization of the world must be faster than the next military mobilization of our common enemy,” he stressed.
“It took Russia less than a second to start the war. It took the world days to react with the first sanctions,” he regretted, recalling times in the past when the world had been “hesitant” to react to Moscow’s “without hesitation” actions, such as the occupation of Crimea .
In the past few days, pressure has mounted on Chancellor Olaf Scholz to quickly authorize the delivery of Leopard, very powerful main battle tanks, to Ukraine.
Any shipment of German-made war material must indeed get the green light from Berlin, and Finnish, Lithuanian, Polish and British leaders had again called for a quick decision on Tuesday.
Olaf Scholz, speaking shortly before President Zelenskyy in the ski resort of Davos, made no announcement on the matter in his speech two days before a crucial meeting of Western countries on aid to Ukraine, held at the US military base on Friday in Ramstein, Germany .
In a question-and-answer session at the end of his speech, Mr. Scholz was explicitly asked about the deployment of Leopard 2 to Ukraine.
“We support Ukraine not only with financial means and humanitarian aid, but also with many weapons,” he said, without ever mentioning the word “tanks”.
At the very beginning of his speech in Davos, Volodymyr Zelenskyy also asked for a minute’s silence for the victims of the helicopter crash that happened near Kyiv on Wednesday.
It was the plane carrying Ukraine’s Interior Minister Denys Monastyrsky who was killed in the crash, killing at least 14 people in total, including a child from a kindergarten, as he traveled to the front lines in the midst of the war with Russia.