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London ready to support allies who can transfer fighter jets to Kiev, says PM Sunak

The head of the British government noted that London was the first in the world to begin training Ukrainian pilots to fly NATO standard fighters

LONDON, February 19. /TASS/. The UK is ready to provide all necessary support to its allies if they decide to hand over fighter jets to Ukraine in the near future, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, who took part in the Munich Security Conference, told the Sky News TV channel.

"Of course, the United Kingdom stands ready to help any country provide planes that Ukraine can use today. But we must also train Ukrainian pilots to use the most advanced jets," Sunak said.

UK Secretary of State for Defense Ben Wallace earlier admitted in an interview with the German Der Spiegel magazine that Western countries did not consider it reasonable to give Kiev modern fighter jets until the conflict between Ukraine and Russia was over. He stressed that this restriction applied to Eurofighter Typhoon fighters in service with the British Air Force.

On January 31, US President Joe Biden said that Washington would not transfer F-16 fighters to Ukraine. Later, Sunak announced that Kiev was offered to start training marines and fighter pilots from NATO in the UK. However, the British government later clarified that this did not mean that it intended to transfer the fighters to Kiev in the nearest future. In his turn, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and German Defence Minister Boris Pistorius repeatedly stated that Germany was not going to deliver the fighters to Ukraine.

Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov stressed that Moscow perceived the West's arms supplies to the Ukrainian armed forces as a growing involvement of Western countries in the conflict.