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Germany to support Ukraine “as long as it takes”: Scholz

Germany will keep up its support for Ukraine’s defence indefinitely, and it will send state-of-the-art weapons to Kyiv in the coming weeks, Chancellor Olaf Scholz declared on Monday.

“Apart from sending advanced air defence, radar systems or drones, the country could assume special responsibility in terms of building up Ukraine’s artillery and air defence capacities,” he said during his visit to the Czech capital.

The Shengen expansion
The German Chancellor also said that European Union countries Croatia, Romania and Bulgaria all meet the requirements to become full members of the bloc’s passport-free Schengen area.

“Schengen is one of the greatest achievements of the European Union, and we should protect and develop it. This means, incidentally, closing the remaining gaps,” he pointed out.

Unanimity at risk?
In his speech, Olaf Scholz also underlined Germany’s commitment to the enlargement of the EU, stressing that the countries of the Western Balkans, Ukraine, Moldova and eventually also Georgia should join the bloc.

However, “in this expanded Union, the differences between the member states will grow as far as political interests, economic clout and social security systems are concerned,” he pointed out.

“Where unanimity is required today, the risk of an individual country using its veto and preventing all the others from forging ahead increases with each additional member state,” Mr Scholz said. “I have therefore proposed a gradual transition to majority voting in common foreign policy, but also in other areas, such as tax policy – knowing full well that this would also have repercussions for Germany,” he added.

Earlier in August, Polish PM Mateusz Morawiecki strongly defended the principle of unanimity in the EU, ensuring it enables every voice to be heard and the adopted solutions to meet the minimum expectations of each member state.

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