Sahra Wagenknecht
© Global Look Press / IMAGO / Martin MüllerGerman veteran politician, Sahra Wagenknecht
Sahra Wagenknecht has lashed out at Berlin's decision to allow Kiev to strike deep into Russia during a campaign rally

Germany is helping to fan the flames of the Ukraine conflict by allowing Kiev to launch long-range strikes into Russia, veteran left-wing politician Sahra Wagenknecht has said.

Wagenknecht made the remarks at a rally in Berlin on Thursday ahead of European Parliament elections. The theme of the Ukraine conflict featured prominently at the demonstration, which was attended by hundreds of the politician's supporters carrying banners bearing Wagenknecht's face and the words "War or peace? It's your choice now."

The firebrand, who earlier this year split from the Left Party to form the Sahra Wagenknecht Alliance (BSW) - a party that is left-leaning on economic issues but closer to the far-right on several hot-button issues such as immigration - blasted German Chancellor Olaf Scholz's government over its Ukraine policy.

Wagenknecht specifically protested Berlin's decision to allow Ukraine to conduct long-range strikes into Russian territory. "What scares me the most [is] the great danger that the war in Ukraine will become a major European war... they are crossing one red line after the other," she said, adding that the fact that Ukraine is allowed to shoot at Russia with German weapons is "crazy."

She urged other Western countries to "stop playing with fire," while repeating calls for a peaceful settlement of the conflict. "War does not end with weapons, war is ended with peace talks," Wagenknecht said. "At some point... something will happen, and what happens will be so terrible that you don't want to imagine it. That's why we can only appeal to everyone who has responsibility in our country... we have to end the war in Ukraine and not keep escalating it; that's madness."

According to Bloomberg, BSW enjoys around 7% support in Germany ahead of the European Parliament election.

Last month, in a landmark U-turn on Berlin's Ukraine policy, a spokesman for Chancellor Scholz said that Germany believes Kiev's "defensive action is not limited to its own territory, but [can] also be expanded to the territory of the aggressor."

Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned the West that he regards support for Ukrainian strikes deep into Russian territory as a significant escalation that could spark an "asymmetric" response. He suggested that Russia could send long-range arms to regions of the world where they could be used against sensitive sites of the countries supporting Ukraine with such weapons.