FDP and Greens politicians have welcomed French President Emmanuel Macron's announcement that he would supply Ukraine with AMX-10RC armored reconnaissance vehicles.

They see the move as a signal to Germany to deliver tanks to Kyiv itself or to lead a joint delivery with the allies.

Eckhart Lohse

Head of the parliamentary editorial office in Berlin.

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Markus Wehner

Political correspondent in Berlin.

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“Macron takes the lead.

The delivery of the reconnaissance tank provides significant support to Ukraine in the fight against the Russian aggressor.

Germany must now also play a leading role and initiate a joint decision by the partner nations to support the Ukraine with the delivery of western-style tanks," said FDP defense politician Alexander Müller of the FAZ

FPD sees fewer and fewer arguments against supplying tanks

Müller wants to deliver Marder or Leopard 1 for this, but also thinks a joint delivery of Leopard 2 tanks is right.

"The Leopard 1 battle tank and the Marder infantry fighting vehicle from industrial stocks are possible, as is the joint delivery of the Leopard 2 battle tank by the user nations," said the FDP politician.

The arbitrary division of weapon systems into categories that can be delivered must stop, as must the distinction between "Eastern" and "Western" designs.

"In view of the suffering of the Ukrainian people, Germany must stop coming up with new excuses for self-imposed restrictions," said Müller, who is the FDP's chairman on the defense committee.

The support for Macron in the FDP does not only come from Müller or the defense politician Marie-Agnes Strack-Zimmermann, who has long been campaigning for Kyiv to have more powerful weapons at its disposal.

Rather, the assessment can also be heard elsewhere in the party that the arguments against a delivery of German Marder-type armored personnel carriers would disappear with the French initiative.

The line always followed by Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD), that one does what the important partners do when it comes to arms deliveries, also applies now.

"The FDP will no longer say no to the delivery of Marder armored personnel carriers," the FAZ was told by party leadership circles.

So far, however, the smallest traffic light partner has shown a certain reluctance towards even heavier equipment.

Main battle tanks like the German Leopard can only be delivered "if everyone does it," said Germany's allies.

“We should provide Ukraine with what is feasible”

Macron's move was also welcomed by the Greens.

Vice Chancellor and Federal Economics Minister Robert Habeck, who is currently in Norway, said on Thursday: "Putin must not succeed, and Putin will not succeed.

We will not stop supplying arms to Ukraine.”

Referring to the French decision to supply wheeled light main battle tanks, and against a backdrop of similar readiness in America, Habeck added: "We will always tailor our supplies to battlefield needs."

Green Group security policy spokeswoman Sara Nanni said France's decision was a good one.

“We should provide Ukraine with what is feasible.

So also leopard and marten from industrial stocks," said the Green politician of the "Süddeutsche Zeitung".

Saskia Esken, co-chair of the SPD, also did not fundamentally rule out the delivery of battle tanks to RTL/ntv without going into detail: “The Chancellor is in close talks with special partners and friends and that will continue to be the case be.

And then we will make the appropriate decisions,” said Esken.

Ukraine had been supported with arms deliveries from the start.

"We will continue to do so in the future, for as long as it is necessary and also in accordance with military developments and the needs," said Esken.