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Ukraine receives the "superpower" Leopard from Germany and Great Britain

Ukraine receives the "superpower" Leopard from Germany and Great

Germany and the UK have delivered the first shipment of battle tanks to Ukraine - providing much-needed ground support as Russian forces step up attacks in the country's east.

Leopard and Challenger tanks were promised to Kiev earlier this year and arrived on Monday in time for an expected spring offensive by Ukrainian forces, Al Jazeera reports .

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz told reporters on Monday that Berlin had offered Kiev highly modern Leopard battle tanks, while the defense ministry later said 18 had been delivered.

"Our tanks have entered the hands of our Ukrainian friends as promised and on time ," German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius said in a statement.

Ukraine's Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov said he inspected a "new addition" to the country's forces - Challenger tanks as well as Germany's Marder infantry fighting vehicles, plus Cougar armored trucks and Stryker armored personnel carriers from the United States. United.

"A year ago, no one would have thought that the support of our partners would be so strong," said Reznikov.

Reznikov praised Britain's challengers, calling the tanks works of "military art".

As Ukraine gains conventional firepower, Russia has vowed to follow through on a plan announced by President Vladimir Putin to deploy tactical nuclear weapons in neighboring Belarus, an initiative that drew widespread criticism.

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