+50,000 sign petition urging Scholz to stop heavy weapons supplies
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz faces an overwhelming amount of signators in favor of halting the delivery of heavy weapons to Ukraine.
On the change.org platform, an online petition urging German Chancellor Olaf Scholz to halt delivering heavy weaponry to Kiev has received more than 50,000 signatures in a single day.
"We welcome that you have so carefully considered the risks so far: the risk of war spreading within Ukraine; the risk of expansion across Europe; yes, the risk of World War III. Therefore, we hope that you will remember your initial position and will no longer supply heavy weapons to Ukraine either directly or indirectly," the petition reads.
The signatories have urged Scholz to do all possible to achieve a cease-fire as soon as feasible.
Two days ago, German lawmakers overwhelmingly voted in favor of supplying Ukraine with "large weaponry and complicated [weapons] systems" to assist Kiev in combating Russia's military operation in Ukraine.
The petition was approved on Thursday with 586 votes in favor, 100 votes against, and seven abstentions.
The vote in Germany's lower house of parliament, the Bundestag, signifies a historic U-turn in policy after the government delayed delivering heavy equipment for weeks.
Scholz stated last week that the German military can no longer deliver armaments to Ukraine since the country's weapons inventories are nearly depleted. He added that the German authorities were working with the country's arms manufacturers to assure continued supplies.
At the end of February, Berlin approved armament exports to Ukraine. Since then, Germany has supplied Kiev with approximately 2,500 anti-aircraft missiles, 900 anti-tank missile launchers and 3,000 rockets, 100 machine guns, 15 anti-structure rocket launchers and 50 rockets, and 100,000 hand grenades, 2,000 mines, 5,300 explosives units, and 16 million rounds of various calibers.
Germany has yet to provide Kiev with heavy weapons such as tanks, artillery, and armored vehicles. The German government also approved the delivery of obsolete German weapons from the Netherlands and Estonia.