Zelensky Visits Germany, Praising Weapons Pledge and Seeking Jets

Speaking to journalists after one-on-one talks, the two leaders struck a friendly tone: They addressed each other by their first names, and Mr. Scholz used the German language’s more intimate form of address.

Mr. Zelensky said that the new arms package that Germany had announced the previous day, totaling 2.7 billion euros, or about $2.95 billion, was “very important and strong help.” But underlining his quest for ever more powerful and sophisticated weapons, he noted that Germany was now Ukraine’s second-largest backer after the United States and joked, “We are working to bring Germany to first place on that.”

It was not clear whether the weapons pledged in the new package would arrive in time for Ukraine’s much-anticipated counteroffensive against Russian forces. When asked by journalists whether Ukraine had received what was necessary to mount an offensive, Mr. Zelensky said, “A few more visits, and it will be sufficient.”

The Ukrainian government has repeatedly urged its allies to supply fighter jets, and Mr. Zelensky told journalists on Sunday that on his recent visits to European capitals he had pushed to create a “fighter jet coalition” and had asked Berlin to support that effort.

But Mr. Scholz evaded any direct reply to that message, pointing instead to the weapons Germany had already provided and also pledged in the latest package. “That is what we as Germans are focusing on now,” he said.

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