Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock has clearly stated that Ukraine must win the war against Russia. Russian President Vladimir Putin fired six Interior Ministry employees in one day. All voices and developments on the Ukraine war here in the ticker.
7:48 a.m .: The Ukrainian ambassador to Germany, Andriy Melnyk, has again called for a speedy delivery of the weapons promised by Germany. He was satisfied with the recent announcement by Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) that weapons such as the Iris-T air defense system would be sent to Ukraine, said Melynk on Friday in the ZDF morning magazine. “But if we’re honest, 100 days of war, up to now not a single piece of heavy equipment has been delivered to Ukraine from Germany.” The first weapons would probably not arrive until the end of June. “You see how precarious the situation is.”
On Wednesday in the Bundestag, the chancellor announced the delivery of the Iris-T and a locating radar to be used to detect artillery positions. Germany also wants to deliver four multiple rocket launchers from Bundeswehr stocks to Ukraine.
In the past few weeks, the federal government had already made two commitments for the delivery of heavy weapons: 50 Gepard anti-aircraft tanks and 7 Panzerhaubitzen 2000 – modern artillery pieces with a range of 40 kilometers – are to be delivered to the Ukraine. But they haven’t gotten there yet. The opposition has repeatedly accused Scholz of hesitation in recent weeks.
6:55 a.m .: Vladimir Putin continues to exchange cheerfully about his staff. This time, Russia’s president has thoroughly sifted through his own interior ministry. Five major generals were fired there, as was the deputy head of the forensic center.
Kremlin spokesman Dimitri Peskov’s succinct justification: “The usual personnel shifts in the ministry.” However, this is probably just an excuse – such shifts are not actually planned as a rule. Rather, Putin seems dissatisfied with his employees, all of whom held senior positions in regional internal affairs departments.
Putin fired the following employees:
Friday, June 3rd, 5:12 a.m.: 100 days after the start of the war, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock has promised Ukraine solidarity and support with other weapons. In a guest article for “Bild” (Friday), the Green politician wrote: “We will continue to support Ukraine. Until there are no more Butschas left. So that what we take for granted is normal again for the people in Ukraine: a life in freedom.”
Baerbock wrote that further arms deliveries were also part of the support: “Putin is counting on perseverance – and on our exhaustion”. The fate of Bucha threatens every village. “That is why we must continue to support Ukraine right now. Also with weapons, because Putin cannot be stopped with words.”
Baerbock assured the partner countries that Germany would continue to act. “Even if it’s difficult. But we will never sit out our common security again, we will tackle it. Together with our partners in the EU and NATO, we are reorganizing our defense,” wrote Baerbock. It is clear: “Peace does not come for free. But every cent we spend is an investment in security and freedom, in the freedom of Europe.” As long as Ukraine is not safe, Europe is not safe either. “If Putin is not stopped in Ukraine, there is always a threat of new aggression.” As the largest country in the EU, Germany has a responsibility to act.
6:36 p.m .: During his visit to Berlin, the President of the Ukrainian Parliament Ruslan Stefantschuk demanded the delivery of German Leopard and Marder tanks to Ukraine. “Of course, what we need most of all is modern weapons. We can also fight and hold out with old weapons from old stocks, but the newer weapons are more efficient,” he said on Thursday after a meeting with members of the Bundestag, according to the official translation. “That’s why we’re expecting both the martens and the leopards.”
The armaments company Rheinmetall has offered to deliver Marder armored personnel carriers and the significantly larger and more powerful Leopard main battle tanks to Ukraine. According to the Federal Government’s previous plans, these tanks are to be used for a ring exchange. Countries like the Czech Republic and Greece are to receive them as compensation for the delivery of old Soviet-design tanks to Ukraine. The waiver of a direct delivery is justified by the fact that the Ukrainian soldiers handle Soviet weapon systems better and could use them immediately.
5:27 p.m .: Vladimir Putin reintroduced an old honorary title from Soviet times in a video link with Russian families. Russian women who have at least ten children will be entitled to the name “mother heroines” in the future. They can also look forward to a five-digit euro amount.
4:50 p.m.: The US has imposed a series of new sanctions on Russia over the war in Ukraine. As the responsible US ministries announced on Thursday, the spokeswoman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Moscow, Maria Zakharova, the cellist and large businessman Sergei Pavlovich Roldugin, who is considered a friend of President Vladimir Putin, and a brokerage firm for luxury yachts were put on the sanctions list.
In addition to Zakharova, the US State Department also sanctioned steel magnate Alexey Mordashov, “one of Russia’s richest billionaires.” You are therefore prohibited from entering the USA.
3.43 p.m .: Because of the Hungarian resistance, the EU is initially waiving sanctions against the Russian Orthodox Church leader Patriarch Kirill. The sixth EU sanctions package, which also includes an extensive oil embargo, was approved on Thursday by representatives of the EU states without the punitive measures actually planned against Kirill, as several diplomats from the German Press Agency confirmed.
12:52 p.m .: FDP Secretary General Bijan Djir-Sarai expects a long dispute with Russia even after the war in Ukraine has ended. “Russia will continue to try to destabilize Ukraine afterwards. And by the way, Russia will continue to try to destabilize Europe,” Djir-Sarai warned on Thursday at the 24th WDR Europe Forum. This is perfectly clear to him. “The conflict with Putin’s Russia will continue for a long time,” said the FDP foreign politician. “Any form of economic cooperation, for example, will be difficult with this regime.”
10:21 a.m .: Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) announced in the Bundestag on Wednesday that he would deliver the modern Iris-T-SLM air defense system from the Diehl armaments group to Ukraine, among other things. Remarkable, since the Bundeswehr does not yet have the anti-aircraft system, even according to information from “Welt”. Only the variant from the air is currently in stock. However, Ukraine is said to have been promised a version that can be used from the ground.
The Ambassador of Ukraine in Germany, Andriy Melnyk, welcomed the promises. “We are happy that things have finally started to move and that the ice has been broken,” Melnyk told the “Stuttgarter Zeitung” and the “Stuttgarter Nachrichten” (Thursday editions). “The Iris system in particular has been something we’ve been working on behind the scenes for almost three months.”
Melnyk hopes that the system will be ready in summer. The training should start in August and the mission should begin in October. Melnyk gave the “Wirtschaftswoche” the costs at 140 million euros per piece. The Ukraine could purchase eleven other systems in the near future.
09:05: The President of the African Union (AU), Senegal’s head of state Macky Sall, meets Russian President Vladimir Putin in Sochi on Friday. The President’s Office in Dakar announced on Thursday that the aim of the visit was “the release of grain and fertilizer, the blockade of which affects African countries in particular”.
The visit was at the invitation of Putin, it said. The African Union has also accepted the request of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to address the members of the African confederation of states in a video conference. The date is not fixed yet.
Ukraine and Russia are among the world’s most important grain producers, Russia is an important fertilizer producer. Exports from both countries have collapsed because of the fighting in Ukraine and Western sanctions against Russia. This increased the risk of undersupply and hunger worldwide.
8:20 a.m .: The Ambassador of Ukraine in Germany, Andriy Melnyk, struck a different tone for the first time and welcomed the announcements by Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) about new arms deliveries. “We are happy that things have finally started to move and that the ice has been broken,” Melnyk told the “Stuttgarter Zeitung” and the “Stuttgarter Nachrichten” (Thursday editions). “The Iris system in particular has been something we’ve been working on behind the scenes for almost three months.”
Scholz had announced in the Bundestag on Wednesday the delivery of the modern air defense system Iris-T-SLM from the armaments company Diehl and a tracking radar. Melnyk told the newspapers he hopes to have the system ready for production by the summer. The training should start in August and the mission should begin in October. Melnyk gave the “Wirtschaftswoche” the costs at 140 million euros per piece. The Ukraine could purchase eleven other systems in the near future.
“We can finally say to Chancellor Scholz from the bottom of our hearts: Thank you!” said Melnyk. “Now one can really speak of a turning point for Ukraine. We hope for more modern weapon systems from Germany.”
According to Melnyk, the last shipment of German weapons arrived in Ukraine on May 3. Melnyk told the newspapers from Stuttgart: “For us, the Marder and the Leopard 1 remain on the agenda. We expect the go-ahead from the federal government to come quickly.”
6:56 a.m .: Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock has clearly stated that she wants Ukraine to win the war against Russia. The Greens politician was asked on Wednesday evening on the ZDF program “Markus Lanz” about Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s more cautious formulation that Russia should not win the war. “I say what the Chancellor says is true,” Baerbock replied. “Of course, Russia must not win this war, but must strategically lose it.” Russia is breaking with international law. “They want to destroy the peace in Ukraine. That’s why Ukraine must not lose under any circumstances – that means: Ukraine must win.”
Surf tip: The Greens – Annalena Baerbock: Man, children and plagiarism
8:54 p.m .: Specialist politicians from the Union and the traffic light coalition cleared up open questions about the use of the 100 billion euro package for the Bundeswehr in a special session of the Defense Committee. Clarifying documents on the procurement projects were delivered, politicians from the CDU and CSU told the German Press Agency on Wednesday evening. It was also said from the ranks of the traffic light parties that the matter was over. According to dpa information, the budget committee also approved the economic plan for the package on Wednesday. This clears the way for a vote in the Bundestag on Friday.
The traffic light coalition of SPD, Greens and FDP as well as the Union had agreed on the legal basis for the planned special fund on Sunday evening after weeks of wrangling. In principle, this gives the green light for weapon orders from the armaments industry on a large scale. Because the special fund is to be anchored in the Basic Law, a two-thirds majority in the Bundestag is required.
8:37 p.m .: Hungary is demanding further changes to the new EU sanctions package against Russia and is thus again blocking its entry into force. Specifically, the country is calling for the planned punitive measures against the Russian Orthodox Church leader, Patriarch Kirill, to be abandoned, as several diplomats from the German Press Agency confirmed on Wednesday evening.
8:16 p.m .: According to UN Secretary-General António Guterres, the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine has revealed the world’s “suicidal dependence” on fossil fuels. At the same time, the war has distracted from the focus on combating the climate crisis, Guterres said on Wednesday in Stockholm before the start of the UN Environment Conference Stockholm 50.
“Obviously, when we have a dramatic situation of the scale of this war, unrivaled by any other conflict in recent decades, there is no avoiding the distraction of attention to other issues, and the urgency of the climate debate has of course suffered from the war in Ukraine.” Guterres therefore again called for an immediate end to the war and more commitment from the international community in the fight against the climate crisis.
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