Germany lifts block on sending weapons to Ukraine
Germany has dropped its block on the delivery of German-made lethal weapons to Ukraine via third countries.
Germany said it has approved the delivery of 400 rocket-propelled grenades to Ukraine by a third country.
It marks a major shift in German policy and could allow an increase of European military assistance to Ukraine as many weapons in Europe are at least partly German-manufactured, which means Berlin has a say on their use and export.
Germany had a long-standing policy of not exporting weapons to war zones. Chancellor Olaf Scholz has repeatedly referred to this in recent weeks when refusing to deliver lethal weapons to Ukraine.
But on Saturday, an EU official confirmed that Germany had agreed to allow the Netherlands to supply the weapons.
Countries aiming to pass on German weapons exports need to apply for approval in Berlin.
In the case of the rocket-propelled grenades, Germany had delivered them to a third country in the past, an EU diplomat told Reuters.
Germany is still in the process of considering a request by Estonia to pass GDR-era howitzers to Ukraine.