Ukraine wants to buy planes in the West after tanks. Last Minute GERMANY, France, Netherlands, England, Russia headlines and events
Having promised Western countries modern battle tanks to counter a Russian invasion, Ukraine is now stepping up pressure on its Western allies to buy combat aircraft.
Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov, who visited Paris, is discussing the issue of supplying combat aircraft to Ukraine on the agenda.
Ukrainian authorities managed to convince their Western allies to buy battle tanks last week after months of uncertainty. This decision was taken despite the hesitation of some NATO members, especially America and Germany.
There is no indication that Ukraine has recently taken a decision to buy fighter jets from the West, or that Western attitudes towards fighter supplies to Ukraine have changed. Some Western leaders are worried that delivering fighter jets to Ukraine will push their country even further into a year-long war.
UK: “Sending combat aircraft to Ukraine is impractical”
The government of the UK, one of Kyiv’s staunchest diplomatic supporters and military suppliers, has said it is “unreasonable” to send military aircraft to Ukraine.
Max Blaine, spokesman for British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, said: “British Typhoon and F-35 warplanes are extremely sophisticated. “It will take months to learn how to fly these planes,” he said.
“Therefore, we do not consider it appropriate to send these aircraft to Ukraine,” a spokesman for Blaine said, without stating whether the UK is opposed to other countries sending military aircraft to Ukraine.
US President Joe Biden also answered “no” yesterday to a journalist’s question about whether the Biden administration is considering sending F-16 combat aircraft to Ukraine.
Ukrainian officials are urging allies to buy the fighter jets, noting that the jets are important in crushing Russian air superiority and ensuring the success of future tank-led counterattacks promised by Western countries.
Ukraine’s allies also noted that long-range missiles capable of hitting Russian territory would not be delivered.
Lavrov: “NATO is directly involved in a hybrid war against Russia”
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov responded to a question about the supply of Western-made weapons to Ukraine, confirming the Kremlin’s view that “NATO has long been directly involved in a hybrid war against Russia.”
After meeting with Egyptian Foreign Minister Semih Shukri in Moscow, Lavrov said that the Russian military “will take all necessary measures to frustrate the implementation of the plans of the West.”
Lavrov also said Egyptian Minister Shukri conveyed US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken’s call for Russia to withdraw from Ukraine.
“Russia is ready to listen to any serious proposals aimed at a comprehensive settlement of the current situation,” the Russian Foreign Minister said.
Both Ukraine and Russia are believed to have increased their arms transfers ahead of operations expected to begin in the coming months. Neither country made any progress on the front lines during the winter months.
Asked about Lithuanian calls to supply Ukraine with fighter jets and long-range missiles, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that Lithuanian calls “reflect the aggressive approach of the Baltic States and Poland, and they will do everything to provoke an escalation of the war.” without regard to the consequences of these countries “they are willing to do.”
“It is very sad that the leaders of the largest European countries, which are implementing European priorities, do not play a balancing role to eliminate such extremist tendencies,” Peskov said.
French President Emmanuel Macron said yesterday that France does not rule out sending fighter jets to Ukraine, but put forward a few conditions before taking any serious action in this regard.
Macron said the terms were not meant to escalate tensions, not to use planes to “enter Russian territory” and not to “weaken the capabilities of the French army.”
The French President also stressed that Ukraine should make an official request for aircraft. This issue may be raised during the visit of Ukrainian Defense Minister Reznikov to Paris.
German chancellor also does not want to send fighter jets
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz is not considering sending fighter jets to Ukraine. Scholz said that all discussions on this issue could be “about domestic political ambitions” of some countries.
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte also said yesterday there was “no taboo” on efforts to help Ukraine, but noted that sending fighter jets would be a “huge step.”
Croatian President Zoran Milanovic criticized Western countries supplying Ukraine with heavy tanks and other weapons. Milanovic noted that arms deliveries would only prolong the war.
Discussions about the delivery of aid in the early stages of the war focused on the possibility of supplying Kyiv with Soviet-made MiG-29 fighters that Ukrainian pilots knew how to use. In March, the US Department of Defense rejected a Polish offer to fly MiG-29 fighter jets from a US air base in Germany to Kyiv, citing that it would cause tension between Russia and NATO.
Although the supply of Western-made military aircraft to Ukraine will provide it with serious support, it is still difficult for Ukraine to deal with Russia’s huge aircraft.
Ukraine has a large fleet of Soviet-made combat aircraft, including the Su-27, MiG-29 and Su-25.
The transition to Western-made combat aircraft requires long-term training for Ukrainian crews and creates logistical problems in maintaining and repairing these aircraft.
Russia systematically attacked Ukrainian air bases and air defense batteries in the early stages of the war. But in response, Ukraine relocated combat aircraft and hid air defense elements. These steps prevented Russia from achieving its goal of gaining complete control over the air.
After Russia suffered heavy losses, the Russian Air Force began to avoid penetrating deep into Ukrainian airspace and focused mainly on frontline support tasks.
Facing similar challenges, the Ukrainian Air Force is trying to prevent Russian warplanes from hitting remaining warplanes and air defense systems.
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