Germany's Bundestag votes against Taurus missiles to Ukraine

# 22 February 2024 18:06 (UTC +04:00)

A majority of German lawmakers voted against an opposition motion to deliver Taurus cruise missiles to Ukraine, APA reports citing Deutsche Welle.

The motion was put forward by the center-right Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union (CDU/CSU) bloc.

Only 182 parliamentarians voted in favor of it, while 480 were against. There were 5 abstentions.

In the run up to the vote, opposition leader Friedrich Merz had urged members of the ruling coalition to support the motion.

The ruling alliance, for their part, are putting forward their own joint motion calling for the delivery of "additional, necessary long-range weapons systems and ammunition" to Ukraine, without explicitly mentioning Taurus.

German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius addressed lawmakers during the parliamentary debate on Ukraine support.

Pistorius stressed the need to boost defense spending in the long run and ensure that the German military is prepared and well-equipped to fight and deter national security threats.

But the minister, a member of Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s center-left Social Democratic Party (SPD), avoided mentioning the Taurus cruise missile system in his address.

When an opposition lawmaker questioned if the government’s draft motion — which calls for supplying "additionally required long-range weapon systems" — also includes Taurus, Pistorius said he "can't answer" that question as he was not a member of the parliamentary group that drafted it.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has been reluctant to supply the weapon system to Kyiv despite pressure from both opposition parties as well as members of his own coalition.