Posted BY: | NwoReport
Russia has warned Western countries that supplying Ukraine with F-16 fighter jets would carry “colossal risks”, after US president Joe Biden announced the US would support the delivery of warplanes.
As G7 leaders met for the second day of the summit in Japan, Russian deputy foreign minister Alexander Grushko accused Western countries of “still adhering to the escalation scenario”.
“It involves colossal risks for themselves,” he added. “In any case, this will be taken into account in all our plans, and we have all the necessary means to achieve the goals we have set.”
Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelensky has long stressed the need for F-16 jets, but the US previously hesitated to provide them. The warplanes can travel at twice the speed of sound and can engage with targets in the air and on the ground.
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Biden has now informed his allies that it will allow the advanced planes to be donated to Kyiv. Mr. Biden, who is attending the G7 with other members, also announced training for Ukrainian pilots.
It comes as Ukraine has denied claims by Russia that it has taken full control of Bakhmut but warned the situation in the key battle town is “critical”.
Hanna Maliar, Ukraine’s defense minister, pushed back on the claim by Yevgeny Prigozhin that his Wagner Group of mercenaries had seized the town around lunchtime.
“Heavy fighting in Bakhmut. The situation is critical,” she said on the Telegram messaging app. “As of now, our defenders control some industrial and infrastructure facilities in the area and the private sector.”
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak welcomed President Biden’s decision on the F-16 fighter jets, having previously pressed allies to provide the Ukrainian president with the jets.
“The UK will work together with the USA and the Netherlands, Belgium, and Denmark to get Ukraine the combat air capability it needs. We stand united,” he said in a statement.
The RAF does not have any US-manufactured F-16s.