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Spare parts are main problem with tanks for Ukraine says MoD

A lack of spare parts is the “main problem” when it comes to supplying Ukraine with Western tanks, the Polish defence minister has said.

Poland has been pushing Nato and EU allies to donate some tanks to Ukraine to help the country defend itself against the Russian invasion. Warsaw has offered to hand over 14 of its German-made Leopard 2 tanks.

Mariusz Blaszczak said supply and access to parts are an issue, especially for those for the Leopards.

“The main problem in supporting Ukraine with Western tanks is spare parts,” he said in an interview with private broadcaster Polsat News on Monday.

“This question should be directed to German industry,” Blaszczak said. “We’ve also been having huge problems as the modernisation of the Polish Leopard tanks has been sluggish since 2015.

“Our experience is not the best when it comes to the efficiency of the German defence industry,” Blaszczak went on to say, adding that his German counterpart, Boris Pistorius, had promised “to deal with the matter.”

In late January, Germany, which was initially reluctant to the Polish initiative, agreed for Poland to hand over its Leopard 2 tanks in the 2A4 version.

Additionally, Germany has agreed donate a number of its own tanks in the 2A6 version, while the UK will offer British-made Challenger 2 tanks. On top of that, Poland has decided to donate 60 more Soviet-era T-72 tanks to Ukraine, including 30 in the domestically-updated version PT 91. 

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