The possibility of Ukraine finally receiving the long-awaited F-16 fighters is getting closer, as confirmed this Friday.
According to CNN has published today, the president of the United States, Joe Biden, confirmed this Friday to the leaders of the G7 that his country will support a joint effort with allies and partners to train Ukrainian pilots in fourth-class aircraft generation, including the F-16. Such training will probably take place in Europe, with the participation of US personnel. It is expected to take several months to complete and that training will begin "in the coming weeks."
"As the training takes place over the coming months, our coalition of countries participating in this effort will decide when to actually provide jets, how many we will provide, and who will provide them,", has a senior US administration official told CNN.
That same official has stated that "to date, the United States and our allies and partners have focused on providing Ukraine with the vast majority of the systems, weapons, and training it requires to conduct offensive operations this spring and summer. Discussions about improving the Ukrainian Air Force reflect our long-term commitment to Ukraine’s self-defense."
CNN has also noted that The US will not block the export of F-16 fighters to Ukraine. That information notes that "the White House comes under increasing pressure from members of Congress and allies to help Ukraine procure the planes amid intensifying Russian aerial attacks." According to CNN, the administration officials consulted are not aware of any formal request from any ally to export F-16s at this time. However, just this week the British government announced that UK and Netherlands are working to provide these fighters.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has welcomed the US "historic decision": "This will greatly enhance our army in the sky. I count on discussing the practical implementation of this decision at the #G7 summit in Hiroshima."
Photos: US Air Force.
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