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Germany has fallen short in supporting Ukraine, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki told POLITICO on Friday, lashing out at Berlin as Europe searches for ways to continue arming Kyiv.
In an interview following the EU leaders’ summit in Brussels, the conservative Polish leader said the EU’s biggest economy must step up and lead.
Germany should be “sending more weapons, sending more ammunition, and giving more money to Ukraine, because they are the richest and the biggest country by far,” Morawiecki said.
“They were not as generous as they should have been,” the Polish prime minister said. “I still encourage them to do so.”
Over the past year, the EU’s eastern capitals have repeatedly pushed their Western counterparts to move faster to support Ukraine and provide more advanced weapons and equipment. And while powerhouse countries like Germany and France note they have given Ukraine considerable stockpiles of arms, vehicles and money, their efforts have still left some eastern counterparts unmoved.
Warsaw, which has a fraught relationship with Berlin, has been particularly vocal.
“I’m not attacking them,” Morawiecki said, “I’m just stating the obvious.”
Berlin is also providing most of the money the EU is using to help compensate other countries for weapons donations to Ukraine. But Morawiecki said he is not impressed with the figure, calling it “proportional” to Germany’s size.
The prime minister did acknowledge that Berlin has made policy changes — which include massive investments to modernize its military and reversing a prohibition on sending weapons into a war zone. In particular, Morawiecki underscored Germany’s decision to send Leopard battle tanks to Ukraine.
“Three months ago, Germany said it’s not possible — now, it’s possible,” he said, “so they are changing their approach.”
The Polish leader also pointed a finger at Germany’s past energy policies, which were heavily reliant on importing Russian gas, arguing it led Europe down a dangerous path.
“Through their very mistaken gas and oil policy towards Russia, they are co-responsible for what is happening, for this mess on the energy market,” he said.
“Germany made this dramatic mistake of being completely dependent in their business model on Russia with fossil fuels,” he said. “And we were crying to them. We were asking them not to do so.”
The prime minister said that he has discussed his views on German support for Ukraine with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.
“I have this conversation every now and again,” he said. “I ask him for as big a support,” he said. “This is all I can do.”