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Ukraine will receive F-16 fighters with ability to strike deep into enemy's rear - Norwegian FM

15 April, 2024 Monday
20:07

Norway, together with its Danish and Dutch partners, plans to provide Ukraine with F-16 multi-role fighters with the latest weapons

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Norwegian Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide said this at a briefing with his Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba on April 15.

He believes that Ukraine should increase its strike capabilities and be able to strike deep into the enemy's rear.

"I am one of those European countries that believe that Ukraine also needs to strengthen its ability to strike behind enemy lines, which is one of the reasons why we are happy to participate in the F-16 fighter jet programme. We will be providing Norwegian F-16s, which are updated and in good shape. Together with our Danish and Dutch colleagues, we are training Ukrainian pilots. Perhaps there will be even longer-range strike capabilities, which are very important for Ukraine now," the minister said.

He stressed that Norway will be with Ukraine as long as it takes to achieve the result - a victory over Russia.

Answering journalists' questions about the number of fighter jets, the minister only said that it was a "significant number".

"When you ask how many will come from Norway, I can't tell you the exact number, because there are also aircraft that have already been updated, in better fighting shape, and some fuselages that can be used for repair, among other things. I will be careful here - I will not say the exact number," the diplomat said.

According to him, the most important thing in this matter is the state of the weapons the aircraft will be equipped with, so the aircraft that will be in flight capability will be equipped with "the latest weapons," Eide said.

At the same time, the Norwegian Foreign Minister did not name a timeframe for the delivery of the fighter jets to Ukraine.

  • In the summer of 2023, Norway confirmed that it had joined the F-16 coalition, but did not publicly name the number of fighter jets it would provide to Ukraine. According to Norwegian media reports at the time, it was about five to ten aircraft.
  • In early January, Norway sent two F-16s to Denmark to train Ukrainian pilots and support staff. 
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