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Minister of Defence Pevkur in Berlin: Germany has the potential to be a European security leader

25. November 2022 - 14:24

Yesterday in Berlin at his meeting with German Defence Minister Christine Lambrecht, Estonian Minister of Defence Hanno Pevkur commended Germany for the important steps it has taken so far to strengthen the defence of NATO’s eastern flank and to support Ukraine.

“After Russia’s attack on Ukraine, the shift in security thinking in Germany has been so remarkable that the Germans even have a term for it – Zeitenwende or turning point. Assistance from Germany to Ukraine, including artillery, missile launchers and air defence systems, which are particularly needed by the Ukrainians, has been outstanding,” said Minister of Defence Pevkur.

“At the Madrid Summit, Germany very clearly supported the concept of a forward defence posture, one that is essential for NATO’s eastern flank, and has subsequently allocated an entire German brigade to protect Lithuania. Germany has also been one of the most active contributors to the Baltic Air Policing mission,” added Pevkur.

At the meeting, German Defence Minister Christine Lambrecht noted that the Baltic States and the Baltic Sea region as a whole are of strategic importance for European security. “We will continue to work together within NATO to strengthen the eastern flank,” said the German Defence Minister.

Germany is currently contributing to the security of the Baltic States as the framework nation for NATO allied forces in Lithuania and to air security in Estonia. Defence Minister Lambrecht also highlighted the recent German-Estonian joint exercise Baltic Tiger.

In addition to further support for Ukraine, the ministers also discussed improving European defence capabilities, security in the region, and the possibilities for developing the defence industry through bilateral cooperation.

“German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has said that Germany, the largest country in terms of geography, economy and population, could be the European leader in security. We support the idea that Germany, through the development of its defence forces, can set an example for the rest of Europe to follow and help shift the defence industry into the next gear,” said Minister of Defence Pevkur.

German Defence Minister Lambrecht also highlighted the German initiative European Sky Shield Initiative, with Estonia being one of the 15 countries having joined. Minister Lambrecht also noted that air defence shortcomings in Europe are nothing new, but action is now being taken as a part of the Zeitenwende, adding that it provides an opportunity to cooperate on resource use, speeding up action, and shaping market pricing.

During his visit to Germany, the Minister of Defence also met with the Chairwoman of the Defence Committee of the German Bundestag Marie-Agnes Strack-Zimmermann, Honorary Consuls and representatives of the defence industry. The Estonian and German defence ministers laid wreaths at the Bundeswehr Memorial.

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Photos: Visit by Minister of Defence Pevkur to Germany (24.11.2022) | Flickr