Skip to content
Edit post

US official: F-16 jets to take 'several months at best' to arrive in Ukraine

by The Kyiv Independent news desk May 23, 2023 2:54 PM 2 min read
This audio is created with AI assistance

It will take "several months at best" to deliver U.S.-made F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine, according to U.S. Air Force Secretary Frank Kendall, cited by CNN.

The U.S. announced on May 20 that it would train Ukrainian pilots on F-16 jet fighters and cooperate with its allies to deliver the planes to Ukraine.

The training will unfold in the coming months. However, the allies are yet to decide which country will provide the jets, how many, or when.

A number of details have to be worked out before Ukrainian pilots can fly Western aircraft in large numbers, Kendall told reporters on May 22.

"We are not under any circumstances going to get F-16s or another Western fighter in significant numbers into the hands of the Ukrainian Air Force in something less than at least several months," Kendall added, as quoted by CNN.

"Several months" is a relatively quick time frame, the official said, since it usually takes over two years to train a new American pilot on the F-16 aircraft.

On May 17, U.K. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and his Dutch counterpart Mark Rutte agreed to build an international coalition to help procure F-16 fighter jets for Ukraine. The coalition will be formed already this year, said Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba.

Ukraine has been campaigning for F-16s to be provided for months.

Yuriy Sak, an adviser to Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov, said on May 16 that Ukraine wants between 40 and 50 F-16 fighter jets.

Borrell: Several countries start training Ukrainian pilots on F-16 jets
Several countries, including Poland, have already started training Ukrainian pilots to use U.S.-built F-16 fighter jets, the European Union’s chief diplomat Josep Borrell said on May 23.
Support independent journalism in Ukraine. Join us in this fight.
Freedom can be costly. Both Ukraine and its journalists are paying a high price for their independence. Support independent journalism in its darkest hour. Support us for as little as $1, and it only takes a minute.
visa masterCard americanExpress

News Feed

2:30 PM

Russia's Supreme Court head dies in Moscow.

Vyacheslav Lebedev, who was Chairman of Russia's Supreme Court since December 1991, died in Moscow on Feb. 23, Russian state-controlled media outlet Kommersant reported on Feb. 24.
2:22 PM

Former UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson arrives in Kyiv.

"With their indomitable courage I have no doubt that the Ukrainians will win and expel Putin’s forces – provided we give them the military, political and economic help that they need," Johnson wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter.
1:44 PM

Zelensky: 'We are 730 days closer to victory'.

"Any normal person wants the war to end. But none of us will allow our Ukraine to end," President Volodymyr Zelensky said in a video marking the two-year anniversary of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24.
Ukraine Daily
News from Ukraine in your inbox
Ukraine news
Please, enter correct email address
9:50 PM

Media: Zelensky may visit Armenia in near future.

President Volodymyr Zelensky may visit Armenia in “the near future,” the Armenian news outlet FactorTV reported on Feb. 23. Preparations for the visit are currently underway, but the exact date has not yet been confirmed, the outlet reported, citing its sources.
MORE NEWS

Editors' Picks

Enter your email to subscribe
Please, enter correct email address
Subscribe
* indicates required
* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required
* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Successfuly subscribed
Thank you for signing up for this newsletter. We’ve sent you a confirmation email.