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Ukraine waiting for consent of tank-producing country to transfer them to European partners – Zelensky

KYIV. Jan 19 (Interfax-Ukraine) – President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky has said that Ukraine expects the consent of the tank-producing country for the transfer from European partners.

As the President stressed at a press conference with head of the European Council Charles Michel in Kyiv, the issue of tanks for Ukraine is still relevant and very sensitive.

"This issue depends on many reasons, but, unfortunately, it does not depend on the desire of Ukraine. We exert political pressure as much as we can, but the most important thing is that we exert it in a reasoned manner. Against thousands of tanks of the Russian Federation, the courage of our military and the motivation of the Ukrainian people alone are not enough. We need the appropriate weapons," he said.

According to Zelensky, now many countries in the EU would like to provide Ukraine with tanks.

"They are motivated and support us, but they are waiting for a corresponding document from those states that have the right to do so. And you know these states. And Poland is ready, and, to be honest, Finland, Portugal, Spain, and a sufficient number of countries that are ready to provide us with even a small number of tanks that they have in service. We are all waiting for the consent of the country that has the rights to certain relevant licenses," he said.

Also, according to the president, in parallel, Ukraine itself is engaged in the corresponding production.

In addition, he stressed that the volumes of tanks already provided to Ukraine are not enough to act quickly.

"Speed and time are important. Every minute is a person. That’s all. The sooner we can de-occupy our territory and be stronger, the more our state will preserve its citizens," he said.

In turn, the President of the European Council noted that the next weeks and months will be important, because the European Council is very determined to convince the EU member states to transfer tanks to Ukraine.

Michel referred to his words he said in the European Parliament yesterday that tanks and appropriate weapons should be provided to Ukraine the sooner the better.

Earlier, a number of European countries, including Poland, Spain, Finland, expressed readiness to transfer Leopard tanks to Ukraine, but have not yet received permission from the German government.