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Denmark to stop training Ukrainian F-16 pilots beyond 2024

by Dmytro Basmat June 25, 2024 8:15 AM 2 min read
F-16 aircrafts during a military parade on Polish Armed Forces Day in Warsaw, Poland on Aug. 15, 2023. (Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
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Denmark will stop training Ukrainian F-16 pilots by the end of this year as the country transitions to operating F-35 fighter jets, Danish Defense Minister Troels Lund Poulsen said on June 24.

“We will be transitioning to flying the F-35, so we need to spend our energy on that, and so we cannot continue training Ukrainian pilots after 2024,” Poulsen said at a press conference on Monday.

The first Danish F-16s are scheduled to arrive in Ukraine this summer. The country will send 19 F-16 aircraft to Kyiv, as well as equipment for F-16 fighter jets. Kyiv also expects to receive the aircraft also from the Netherlands, Belgium, and Norway.

Denmark will soon finish training about 20 Ukrainian F-16 pilots at the Skrydstrup air base.

Poulsen noted that Ukraine will be able to "make its contribution" to the training of F-16 pilots in another capacity, although he did not provide details on future training.

Efforts are currently ongoing to train Ukrainian F-16 pilots in Romania and the United States.

A staunch supporter of Ukraine, Denmark has already allocated 64.8 billion Danish kroner (over $9 billion) in military aid under its Ukraine fund for the period of 2023-2028.

Denmark is anticipating the arrival of 27 new F-35 fighter jets - the first of which arrived in Denmark in September 2023.

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