100.000 march for peace as Germany approves weapons deliveries to Ukraine16 March 2022 , By Abi carter
At least 100.000 people joined an anti-war rally in Germany’s capital city on Sunday, just as the government made a U-turn to approve weapons deliveries to Ukraine and shut its airspace to Russian planes.
100.000 join anti-war protest in Berlin
According to police, more than 100.000 people attended the solidarity march in Berlin to protest against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, while organisers estimated the total number of attendees to be closer to 500.000.
Many protestors wore the blue and yellow colours of the Ukrainian flag and carried placards with slogans like, “No World War 3” and “Stop the killer” as they congregated around the Brandenburg Gate, not far from the Russian embassy on Unter den Linden.
Germany boosts defence budget and pledges weapons for Ukraine
The protest took place as a special session was being held at the German parliament, at which Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced a 2 percent increase in military spending following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine - a major shift in the federal republic’s defence policy. “It’s clear we need to invest significantly more in the security of our country, in order to protect our freedom and our democracy,” Scholz said.
Over the weekend, the federal government also stepped up its commitment to imposing sanctions on Russia over the invasion, joining the movement to ban Russia from the Swift global payments system, a key component of worldwide banking, and closing off its airports and airspace to Russian planes.
Scholz’s government also announced a major U-turn on Germany’s longstanding policy of banning weapons exports to active conflict zones, approving the delivery of 1.000 anti-tank missiles and 500 “Stinger” missiles to Ukraine. Previously, the government’s pledge to send just 5.000 helmets was met with dismay and mockery.
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