German finance minister makes surprise visit to Kyiv

AFP - [email protected]
German finance minister makes surprise visit to Kyiv
Christian Lindner (FDP) met with Kyiv's mayor Vitali Klitschko on Monday in Kyiv, Ukraine. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Andreas Hoenig

German Finance Minister Christian Lindner said on Monday his country stood "shoulder to shoulder" with Ukraine, as he arrived in Kyiv for his first visit since the start of the war.


Lindner said he would hold "very concrete" talks with Ukrainian officials on how the German finance ministry can support Ukraine now and in the future.

"We stand by Ukraine's side, shoulder to shoulder," Lindner told reporters after arriving in Kyiv by train.

Since Russia's invasion in February 2022, Germany has provided some 22 billion to Ukraine in humanitarian, financial and military aid, Lindner said.

READ ALSO: What impact has a year of war in Ukraine had on Germany's economy?

"Ukraine must not lose this war," the minister said.

The talks in Kyiv would not just be about the current situation, he said. "We will also look to the future."

Discussions would focus on possible areas of cooperation, including in direct foreign investment and customs issues, he added.

The visit comes as Germany is under growing pressure from Kyiv to send long-range Taurus cruise missiles to boost its struggling counter-offensive against Russian troops.


The German government has so far resisted the pleas, on concerns that the missiles could reach Russian territory and widen the conflict.

Mykhailo Podolyak, a senior aide to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, told Germany's Bild newspaper that the Taurus missiles were "crucial" to Ukraine's fightback.

Seeking to ease concerns about the long reach of the weapons, Podolyak said they would be used "exclusively on the territory of Ukraine, within the internationally recognised borders of 1991".

READ ALSO: Germany's Scholz vows to ramp up weapons production for Ukraine


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