German lawmakers alarmed Russia may have recorded Bundeswehr briefing

German lawmakers are demanding clarification after the publication of an alleged Bundeswehr briefing by a Russian media outlet in which sensitive issues relating to Ukraine were apparently discussed.

“If this story turns out to be true, it would be a highly problematic incident,” Konstantin von Notz, the chairman of the Bundestag’s parliamentary oversight committee, told the Redaktionsnetzwerk Deutschland (RND) news agency.

He was referring to a 30-minute audio recording published on Friday by the head of Russian state broadcaster RT, Margarita Simonyan, which German lawmakers fear could have been intercepted.

In the clip, senior air force officers can be heard discussing the theoretical possibility of Ukraine using German Taurus cruise missiles.

The German Ministry of Defence is now investigating whether confidential communications may have been intercepted, a ministry spokeswoman told dpa.

The alleged conversation includes details of the debate over the provision of Taurus missiles to Ukraine, as well as a potentially explosive statement about other Western allies.

The exchange heard in the recording addresses whether Taurus cruise missiles would theoretically be technically capable of destroying the bridge built by Russia to the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea, annexed by Moscow in violation of international law.

The clip also contains reference to the British having “a few people on the ground” in connection with the deployment of their Storm Shadow cruise missiles delivered to Ukraine.

It follows anger in Britain over what London saw as indiscretion on the part of German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

Scholz had said, in the context of the Taurus debate, that “what the British and French are doing in terms of target control and accompanying target control cannot be done in Germany,” without elaborating further.

Some saw this as indicating that French and British forces are supporting the control of cruise missiles supplied to Ukraine. London immediately denied this was the case.

Scholz has repeatedly ruled out the supply of Taurus missiles to Ukraine, despite repeated requests by Kiev, arguing that he fears Germany could be drawn more deeply into the war launched by the Kremlin in February 2022.

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