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Norway to send F-16s to Denmark for Ukrainian pilots to train on

by Nate Ostiller and The Kyiv Independent news desk January 3, 2024 2:26 PM 2 min read
F-16 fighter jets 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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Norway will send two F-16 fighter jets to Denmark as part of a training mission for Ukrainian pilots, Norwegian Defense Minister Bjoern Arild Gram said on Jan. 3, cited by the Norwegian media outlet NRK.

The "fighter jet coalition" to provide training for Ukrainian pilots and technical staff was officially established in July by 11 founding allied countries. Lessons for Ukrainian aviators are underway in Denmark and the U.S., and a training center was recently opened in Romania.

Norway will also provide 10 instructors to the training facility in Denmark. The two planes the country will send are for training purposes, but according to NRK, Norway also plans to send Ukraine between five and 10 F-16s.

The Netherlands will deliver 18 F-16 aircraft to Ukraine, President Volodymyr Zelensky announced on Dec. 22, following a call with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte.

It is unclear when the fighter jets will actually arrive in Ukraine, and some Ukrainian lawmakers have suggested that they will not be operational until the late spring, in the best case scenario.

The Washington Post reported that according to official estimates, Ukrainian pilots would be ready to fly F-16s no earlier than summer 2024.

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