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Poland says several countries willing to send MiG-29 jets to Ukraine

by The Kyiv Independent news desk March 15, 2023 2:00 PM 2 min read
Mikoyan MiG-29 fighter jets of the Polish Air Force take part in a NATO shielding exercise at the Lask Air Base on Oct. 12, 2022, in Lask, Poland. (Photo by Omar Marques/Getty Images)

Warsaw has received "clear declarations" from several countries willing to supply Ukraine with MiG-29 fighter jets, the Polish government's spokesman Piotr Muller said on March 15, as cited by Bloomberg.

Muller didn't name those countries.

A day before, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said that Warsaw could transfer "a limited number" of Soviet-era jets to Ukraine within the next four to six weeks.

Earlier, Slovakia's Defense Minister Jaroslav Nad expressed his readiness for joint delivery of MiG-29s with Poland. However, a corresponding decision of the Slovak government has been delayed by political infighting before the country's early elections in September, according to Bloomberg.

Slovak media outlet Pravda reported on March 15 that the country's government has already started discussing the delivery of MiG-29 jets to Ukraine, and the negotiations with international allies are ongoing.

Slovakia's Deputy Prime Minister Veronika Remišová said, cited by Pravda, that Slovakia no longer needed the ten MiG-19s it was considering sending Ukraine. "It would be best for Slovakia to give them to Ukraine," she added.

NATO member states Bulgaria, Croatia, and Romania also have MiG-29 fighters in their stockpiles.

On March 14, the United States repeatedly claimed it would not oppose the decision of other countries to transfer combat aircraft to Ukraine. Meanwhile, Kyiv's allies, including the U.S., have so far refused to supply Western fighter jets to Ukraine, such as the U.S.-built F-16, in service since the 1970s and operated by over 20 nations.

Critics argue that allies' reluctance to supply F-16, Typhoon, Dassault fighter jets and long-range ATACMS missiles to Ukraine will prevent Kyiv from launching a counteroffensive and liberating the rest of Ukrainian territory. Ukraine's lack of advanced aircraft and missiles will likely prolong Russia's war of aggression and result in thousands of deaths.

Politico: US senators from both parties pressing Pentagon to send F-16s to Ukraine
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“We truly need popular support, especially during wartime. Being not dependent on a single money bag telling journalists what to do has always been quite a task in Ukraine. In wartime, that’s even more important.”
Illia Ponomarenko, defense reporter
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