If a nation provides “instructions or training” to a party to a conflict, including in using specific weapons in addition to supplying it with arms, this nation could lose its “safe” status as a neutral party in the conflict under international law, the panel of experts told German MPs in the report.
The weapons deliveries themselves do not pose such a risk under international law, the 12-page document issued back in mid-March says.
Berlin has brushed off the concerns, saying it does not believe it is crossing a red line by allowing Ukrainian troops to be trained at US bases on German soil. The government is well aware of the March report, spokesman Steffen Hebestreit told the media.
“We are convinced that the training of Ukrainian soldiers [in using] weapons systems in Germany still does not mean directly joining the war,” he said.
Germany’s government announced plans to supply Ukraine with self-propelled anti-aircraft guns last week. Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht also announced at the US’ Ramstein base that Berlin would support the training of Ukrainian soldiers with Western artillery systems.
Ukrainian troops have reportedly been receiving military training on German soil for quite some time. In mid-April, the Pentagon announced it would provide training to Ukrainian troops in another country – and last Friday, the US military confirmed soldiers had been trained at its German bases.