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Poland points finger at US, NATO over delivery of fighter jets to Ukraine – Reuters

“Poland is not a party to this war. We want peace as soon as possible. And NATO is not a party to this war either,” Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki told reporters, reiterating his call for the US-led NATO alliance to decide on the potential delivery of Warsaw-owned planes to Ukraine. The remarks took place in Vienna, as he met Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer on Wednesday.

The delivery must be approved by the entire bloc, and Washington in particular, Morawiecki insisted.

“A decision as serious as the surrender of aircraft must be a unanimous and unambiguous decision taken by the whole of NATO. Today, this decision is in the hands of NATO, in the hands of the Americans. said the prime minister.

Kiev has repeatedly urged Western countries to send in additional weapons, including fighter jets, amid the ongoing conflict with Russia that erupted in late February when Moscow launched a full-scale offensive in Ukraine. While Kyiv has claimed that up to 70 former Soviet-made planes belonging to Eastern European NATO countries will be delivered shortly, no actual deliveries have materialized yet.

Potential suppliers and Washington actively blamed such a decision on the danger of a direct confrontation with Russia. The US-led alliance has also consistently rejected the idea of ​​sending troops, refusing Kiev’s repeated calls for NATO to establish a no-fly zone over the country.

On Tuesday, Warsaw declared itself ready to hand over its fleet of MiG-29s “immediately and free of charge” to a NATO base in Germany for onward transfer to Ukraine. In return, Poland urged the United States to supply Western-made products “used aircraft with corresponding operational capabilities.”

The idea, however, has been met with skepticism in Washington, with senior US officials warning that the move risks dragging NATO directly into the ongoing conflict.

“The prospect of fighter jets ‘at the disposal of the United States government’ leaving a US/NATO base in Germany to fly into disputed airspace with Russia over Ukraine is sparking serious concerns for the entire NATO alliance,” he added. said Pentagon spokesman John F. Kirby.

At the same time, the official suggested that Warsaw was free to deliver its jets to Ukraine itself, saying the decision was “ultimately one for the Polish government.” Earlier, a similar position was expressed by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who said that NATO countries willing to supply Ukraine with aircraft and other weapons had “a green light” for that.


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