Friday, March 17, 2023

First NATO member to provide Ukraine with fighter fighters will be Poland

Poland to be 1st Nato member to give Ukraine fighter jets

WARSAW: Poland announced on Thursday that it intends to provide Ukraine with approximately a dozen MiG-29 fighter jets. This would make Poland the first member of NATO to respond to Kyiv's increasingly pressing requests for warplanes to protect it from the Russian invasion.

According to President Andrzej Duda, Warsaw will hand over four of the Soviet-made warplanes "within the next few days." The remaining aircraft required maintenance but would be provided later. The Clean word he used to portray the all out number can mean somewhere in the range of 11 and 19.

Duda stated, "They are in their final years of functioning, but they are in good working condition."

Although Slovakia has stated that it will send its own decommissioned MiGs to Ukraine, he did not specify whether other nations would follow suit. Additionally, Poland was the first member of the NATO to supply Ukraine with German-made Leopard 2 tanks.

Piotr Mueller, a spokeswoman for the Polish government, said on Wednesday that other nations had also pledged MiGs to Kiev, but he did not name them. Poland and Slovakia had both indicated that they were prepared to hand over their aircraft, but only as part of a larger international coalition that was also ready to do so.

Duda's announcement appeared to surprise Germany's government, which is a NATO member.

According to German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius, who spoke to reporters, "So far, everyone has agreed that it's not the time to send fighter jets." I have not yet received confirmation from Poland that this has taken place.

The White House praised Poland for continuing to "punch above their weight" in assisting Kyiv and called Poland's move a sovereign decision. However, it stressed that the move would have no effect on President Joe Biden, who has resisted calls to provide US F-16s to Ukraine.

John Kirby, a spokesman for the White House National Security Council, stated, "At this time, there is no change in our view with respect to fighter aircraft." That is entirely up to us. That is where we are; other nations are free to make their own decisions.

According to the White House, Poland informed the United States of its decision to provide MiGs prior to Duda's announcement.

After more than a year of fighting, it is unknown how many of Ukraine's MiG-29s are still in use after Russia's full-scale invasion in February 2022. Several dozen of Ukraine's MiG-29s were left over from the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991.

Last year, the question of whether to provide Ukraine, a country that is not a member of NATO, with fighter jets began, but Nato allies expressed concern about increasing the alliance's role in the war. Even as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy made increasingly insistent pleas to Western supporters to share their warplanes, the hesitancy persisted.

During a joint news conference in Warsaw with Petr Pavel, the visiting Czech President, Duda made the announcement.

According to Duda, the Polish air force would acquire American-made F-35 fighters and South Korean-made FA-50 fighters to replace the aircraft it provides to Ukraine.

Throughout the war, Poland has been of crucial assistance to Ukraine. It is facilitating large number of American soldiers and has taken in additional Ukrainians than some other country during the evacuee mass migration ignited by the Russian attack.

Despite being a NATO member, the central European nation still harbors a fear of Russia despite having been subjected to Russian invasions and occupations for centuries.

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