(Bloomberg) -- The UK is considering sending Challenger 2 battle tanks to Ukraine, according to two people familiar with the discussions, underscoring the intensifying efforts of Kyiv’s allies to provide it with heavier offensive weapons.

If it goes ahead, it would be the first time a Western country gave Ukraine modern main battle tanks to fight Russian forces. No final decision has been taken, according to the the people, who wished to not be identified because of the sensitivity of the discussions.

The news that Britain is considering sending its heavy tanks to Ukraine follows last week’s announcements from the US, France and Germany that they will send infantry fighting vehicles.

Those decisions ended months of pressure on allies to send Kyiv heavier offensive weapons that some governments had said were too complicated for Ukrainian forces to use and that supplying them may push NATO countries closer to direct conflict with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s military.

The Challenger 2 is a main battle tank designed to destroy other tanks, according to the UK’s Ministry of Defence website. Top defense officials from the US, the UK, Germany and other Ukrainian allies will meet in Germany on Jan. 20. 

The UK previously gifted Ukraine some 200 armored vehicles, including tracked vehicles, focused on providing air-defense capabilities and transportation. Britain has committed to matching or exceeding the support it gave Ukraine last year in 2023.

(Updates with details, context from first paragraph.)

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