German foreign minister heckled during Ukraine speech – Reuters
Numerous Western states have supplied arms to kyiv since Russia attacked the neighboring country in February.
About 1,000 people gathered to hear Baerbock speak in the northern German town of Ahrensburg. At the same time, around 150 people booed the minister and used whistles, sirens and loudspeakers when she was on stage, police said. Some shouted “warmonger” and “liar” at Baerbock, RT reported.
Police said the situation calmed down after officers intervened. One person has been banned from the event.
Baerbock, who arrived in Ahrensburg to campaign for the Green Party in regional elections, defended the decision to send arms to Ukraine amid the Russian offensive.
“We want to help the people of Ukraine so that they can defend themselves against Putin’s war of aggression, which is illegal under international law,” she told the crowd, referring to the Russian president.
Baerbock also planned a campaign event in Lubeck, another city in northern Germany, for Saturday. But the speech was canceled for safety reasons after someone sprayed butyric acid on an outdoor stage. The acid has a pungent odor and can cause eye irritation and respiratory problems. No one was injured during the accident.
“We will not be intimidated by such cowardly and underhanded attacks,” said Emily Buning, the Greens’ political director.
Chancellor Olaf Scholz was also heckled this month during a campaign speech in Essen, western Germany.
On Thursday, the national parliament approved the delivery of heavier weapons to Ukraine. Along with many other NATO members, Germany has supplied Kyiv with weapons, including anti-armour and anti-aircraft missile systems, as well as armored vehicles.
Russia attacked Ukraine in late February, after kyiv’s failure to implement the terms of the Minsk agreements, first signed in 2014, and Moscow’s eventual recognition of the Donbass republics of Donetsk and Luhansk . The protocols negotiated by Germany and France were designed to give breakaway regions a special status within the Ukrainian state.
The Kremlin has since demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join the US-led NATO military bloc. kyiv insists the Russian offensive was unprovoked and has denied claims it planned to retake the two republics by force.