The United States announced on Friday that it has given Denmark and the Netherlands the green light to send American F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine, after Ukrainian pilots complete their training on how to operate them.
A spokesperson for the U.S. State Department confirmed that Denmark and the Netherlands received "official assurances" in this regard.
The spokesperson added, "In this way, Ukraine will be able to fully utilize its new capabilities once the first group of pilots completes their training. The F-16 aircraft will contribute to Ukraine's defense and deterrence capabilities."
The United States has strict rules regarding the resale or transfer of American military equipment by allied countries. The exact timeline for the completion of training for Ukrainian pilots remains unknown.
It is expected that the training, provided by a coalition of 11 countries, will begin in August of this year. Officials hope that the pilots will be ready by the beginning of 2024.
Dutch Defense Minister Kajsa Ollongren welcomed the U.S. approval on Friday. She stated on the "X" platform (formerly Twitter), "This allows us to achieve success in training Ukrainian pilots."
The Dutch news agency confirmed that "everything takes time," noting that it will take several months before the Netherlands can actually send F-16 fighter jets.
Kyiv (Kiev) regularly demands access to these fighter jets to support its ongoing counteroffensive launched in June. In July, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov stated that Moscow would consider the sending of F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine a "nuclear threat.