The United States has approved the shipment of F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine from Denmark and the Netherlands. They will be sent as soon as the training of pilots is completed, Reuters reported on 18 August (narration by UNIAN).
The states have officially assured Denmark and the Netherlands that they will expedite the approval of all necessary formalities for the transfer of these aircraft to Ukraine as soon as the training of Ukrainian pilots is completed. Denmark and the Netherlands have recently requested such assurances. U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken sent letters to the authorities of these countries, saying, “I am writing to express the full support of the United States for both the transfer of F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine and the training of Ukrainian pilots by qualified F-16 instructors”.
The letters noted, “It is critical that Ukraine be able to defend itself against Russian aggression and violations of its sovereignty”. In addition, the US secretary of state emphasized that the transfer of F-16 fighter jets would allow Ukraine “to take full advantage of the new capabilities as soon as the first group of pilots completes training”.
Meanwhile, on August 17, it became known that Ukraine received two more IRIS-T SAM launchers from Germany. This is a short-range air defense system. It is known that the range of the complex’s anti-missile missile is 12 km with a target height of up to 8 km.
UNIAN reported with reference to the Bundestag that the new package of military aid to Germany also included about five thousand smoke shells of 155-mm caliber, ten portable Ground Observer radars for counter-battery warfare and cargo transport (four 8×8 HX81 tractor-trailers and five semi-trailers; eight 15-ton forklifts).
In addition, the Czech Republic said that it would transfer a batch of Mi-24V helicopters to Ukraine, while the UK will transfer air defense equipment worth over $114m to Ukraine. The country has signed three contracts, one of which is with the Norwegian defense company Kongsberg, from which it will receive counter-drone systems.