Berlin, Jan 19 (EFE).- Germany’s newly sworn-in defense minister, Boris Pistorius, held talks on Thursday with his French counterpart, Sébastien Lecornu, about the ongoing war in Ukraine and cooperation on security policy.
Pistorius held his first meeting as Germany’s defense minister soon after he had been sworn into his new role by president Frank-Walter Steinmeier on Thursday morning, according to a statement issued by his office.
“France is our closest ally and oldest friend in the European Union. Paris and Berlin have also been working closely together on security policy for decades,” Pistorius said.
“That’s why it was particularly important to me to get in touch with my French colleague Lecornu as quickly as possible,” he added.
Both ministers will continue the meeting in person on Sunday at the Franco-German Ministerial Council in Paris which takes place on the 60th anniversary of the signing of the Elysian Treaty — where both nations laid the foundations for their new relationship as allies after centuries of rivalry and wars.
Pistorius is also due to meet the United States defense secretary Lloyd Austin later on Thursday to discuss military support in Ukraine.
“I look forward to meeting with German minister of defense Pistorius and federal minister Schmidt, to discuss our shared defense priorities and enhanced cooperation among democracies,” Austin said on Twitter.
On Friday, defense leaders from some 50 countries and Nato will hold talks at Ramstein Air Base in western Germany.
The allies are expected to announce new military support for Ukraine and a decision on whether Germany will deploy Leopard 2 battle tanks to Kyiv or approve the transfer of the tanks from other allied countries. EFE