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Denmark ready to give F-16s to Ukraine if US approves

by The Kyiv Independent news desk June 17, 2023 5:49 PM 2 min read
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Acting Danish Defense Minister Troels Lund Poulsen said on June 17 that Denmark could donate fighter jets to Ukraine but only if the U.S. gives the greenlight, Danish media Radio4 reported.

"Ukraine needs planes. More than ever, if they are to win their fight. This also applies to Danish F-16 combat aircraft," Poulsen reportedly said.

Denmark reportedly has 43 U.S.-made F-16 fighter jets, including 30 on active duty, but the fleet is being replaced by more modern F-35 aircraft.

Poulsen told the TV2 channel on June 15 that Ukrainian pilots will be able to train on F-16 fighter jets on Danish soil.

Poulsen explained that according to a joint plan with the Netherlands, Ukraine's pilots would receive training at the Danish Air Force base Skrødstrup in Southern Jutland, where F-16s are based.

Denmark and the Netherlands are members of the so-called "fighter jet initiative" aimed at providing advanced Western military aircraft, as well as the necessary training, to Ukraine's military.

Ukraine has received 14 MiG-29 fighter jets from Poland and 13 from Slovakia but has been pushing for more advanced aircraft.

Ukraine's Defense Ministry has previously said it requires at least 48 F-16 fighter jets to liberate territory from Russia.

During a press conference in late May, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said that the Netherlands was "seriously considering" giving F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine.

Ukraine has been campaigning for months for its Western allies to provide more advanced fighter jets to gain air supremacy over Russia.

On May 24, President Volodymyr Zelensky said that the first F-16 fighter jet delivered to Ukraine "will be one of the strongest signals from the world" that Russia is "only becoming weaker and more isolated."

This Week in Ukraine Ep. 8 – How Ukrainian air defense denies Russia air superiority
“This Week in Ukraine” is a video podcast hosted by Kyiv Independent’s reporter Anastasiia Lapatina. Every week, Anastasiia sits down with her newsroom colleagues to discuss Ukraine’s most pressing issues. Episode #8 is dedicated to the work of Ukrainian air defense, and how it denies Russia the ai…
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