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Jul 10, 2024, 11:47am EDT

Western F-16 fighter jets are on way to Ukraine and will be flying this summer

F-16 fighter jets
Gleb Garanich/File Photo/Reuters
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More than 60 fighter jets are on their way to Ukraine and will be flying later this summer, the US, Denmark, and Netherlands announced Wednesday.

The warplanes are among the most advanced weapons the West has provided to Ukraine; officials had initially ruled out transferring the jets to Kyiv, citing fears of Russian escalation.

Belgium and Norway will also transfer F-16s, although these aren’t expected until later this year.

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Russia’s Monday strike on a Kyiv children’s hospital, which Western officials believe was likely timed as a warning from Putin to NATO, underscored Ukraine’s urgent need for air defenses. The country had asked for the jets to help it shoot down Russian missiles and glide bombs.

Western countries have also committed to providing Ukraine with dozens of air defense systems, including at least four Patriot systems.

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