Live Updates: Russia’s War in Ukraine

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The Biden administration is finalizing plans to send US-made Abrams tanks to Ukraine and could make an announcement as early as this week, according to three US officials familiar with the deliberations.

The delivery schedule for the tanks is still unclear and it normally takes several months to train troops to use the tanks effectively, officials said.

An announcement about the tanks could be part of an effort to break a diplomatic standoff with Germany, which last week told the United States it would not send its Leopard tanks to Ukraine unless the United States also agreed to sending their M1 Abrams tanks. .

The government’s top national security officials were actively considering what steps they could take to convince Germany to send the leopards.

At a meeting of Western defense leaders in Germany on Friday, the United States and its allies failed to convince German officials to send the leopards as part of Berlin’s next round of military aid. to Ukraine. But on Tuesday, German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius said: “We are preparing our decision, which will come very soon” about the tanks.

Later on Tuesday, the German newspaper Der Spiegel reported that after “months of debate”, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz had decided to send Leopard tanks to Ukraine.

CNN has contacted the German government for comment.

A bit of context: The Biden administration has never completely ruled out the possibility of shipping US tanks, but US officials said publicly last week that now was not the right time to send the 70-ton M1 Abrams tanks because they are expensive and require a significant amount of training require to operate.

Instead, tanks have been repeatedly touted as a long-term option — though critics say the time has come as Ukraine prepares for the possibility of Russia mobilizing more troops and launching a new offensive.

Sky News Arabia was the first to report that the United States was considering sending the tanks.

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