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US approves F-16 fighter jets for Ukraine from Denmark, Netherlands - Reuters

Ukraine needs F-16s to counter Russian air superiority. 

US approves F-16 fighter jets for Ukraine from Denmark, Netherlands - Reuters
F-16 Fighting Falcon
Photo: US Air Force

The United States has approved providing of F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine from Denmark and the Netherlands immediately after the training of Ukrainian pilots is completed.

Reuters reports this with reference to a source.

Ukraine has been actively seeking American F-16 fighters to counter Russian air superiority. Washington has provided Denmark and the Netherlands with official assurances that the United States will speed up the approval of requests for F-16s to be sent to Ukraine once the pilots are trained, a U.S. official told.

Denmark and the Netherlands have recently requested these guarantees. The United States must approve the transfer of military aircraft from its allies to Ukraine.

This month in Denmark, an 11-nation coalition was to begin training Ukrainian pilots to fly F-16 fighter jets. In July, acting Danish Defence Minister Troels Pulsen said the country hoped to see "results" from the training in early 2024.

NATO members Denmark and the Netherlands are leading an international effort to train pilots and support personnel, and ultimately enable Ukraine to obtain F-16s for use in the war against Russia.

US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken has sent letters to his Danish and Dutch counterparts assuring them that the requests will be approved, a US official said.

"I am writing to express the full support of the United States for both the transfer of F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine and the training of Ukrainian pilots by qualified F-16 instructors," Blinken said in a letter to the two officials. 

Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said that the first F-16s should start flying in Ukrainian skies by the end of the first quarter of 2024.

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