Germany will fast track its decision making on arms exports to Ukraine - Die Welt

German Economy and Climate Minister Robert Habeck speaks during an extraordinary session, after Russia launched a massive military operation against Ukraine, at the lower house of parliament Bundestag in Berlin, Germany, February 27, 2022. REUTERS/Michele Tantussi

BERLIN, March 23 (Reuters) - Germany will fast track its internal decision making on arms exports to Ukraine, German newspaper Die Welt reported on Wednesday, citing Economy Minister Robert Habeck.

Consignments of arms exports must be approved by several ministries, coordinated by the Federal Chancellery.

Applications for Ukraine would be processed with the "highest priority", with the economy ministry agreeing to applications immediately, Die Welt reported, citing government sources.

"With the decision to supply weapons to Ukraine, we have embarked on a path that everyone hopefully knew we would have to follow consistently," Habeck told Die Welt.

"For me and the ministry, this means we will of course approve all arms deliveries in the agreed corridor. This will be done without delay," the minister said.

The economy ministry was not immediately available for comment.

Russia's invasion of Ukraine prompted Germany to stage a historic reversal of its policy of not sending weapons to conflict zones, but the Ukrainian government has been frustrated by delays.

The German Defence Ministry applied on Wednesday for the supply of 2,000 additional anti-tank weapons to Ukraine from Bundeswehr stocks, the newspaper reported.

On Wednesday, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock also said further Strela missiles, which had been in the inventories of the former Communist East German army, were on the way to Ukraine after delays in deliveries. read more

Reporting by Zuzanna Szymanska Editing by Alexandra Hudson

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