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Russia says F-16 deliveries will raise questions about NATO’s role

Sending fighter jets to Ukraine could mean they have to take off from NATO airfields, Russian Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov points out.

He believes that a lack of infrastructure and personnel in Ukraine could create in practice the need for F-16 aircraft to need airports on NATO territory to operate. This will raise questions about NATO’s involvement in the conflict, he said in a statement.

– There is no infrastructure for the operation of the F-16 inside Ukraine, and the necessary number of pilots and maintenance personnel is also not there, says Anatoliy Antonov via the Telegram account of the Russian Embassy in the United States.

NATO countries have not yet committed to delivering the F-16 plane, but US President Joe Biden on Friday gave the green light for Ukrainian pilots to learn to fly the US fighter jet.

– What will happen if American fighter jets take off from NATO airfields operated by foreign “volunteers”? Antonov asks.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy assured Biden that the planes would not be used for attacks inside Russian territory. Antonov says any Ukrainian attack on the Crimean peninsula will be considered an attack on Russia.

– It is important that the United States is fully aware of this, he said.

Western countries face “colossal risk” if they send F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine, read the first comment from Russian officials after Biden made his decision on Friday.

Darell Ferguson

"Tv guru. Analyst. Lifelong alcohol junkie. Friendly bacon specialist. Twitter nerd."

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