Leopard-2 and F-16: why this military equipment is important for Ukraine

Ukraine has received a “positive breakthrough” in the provision of tanks. This was stated by the Minister of Defense of Ukraine Oleksiy Reznikov. Although the allies have not agreed on the supply of Leopard-2 tanks (“Leopard 2”), training missions for Ukrainian tank crews are planned to begin now. It also became known that the United States will support the transfer of F-16 fighters by Ukraine’s allies, informs FREEDOM.

“There is a breakthrough – this is an opportunity for countries that own Leopards to start training missions, courses for our tank crews. We will start with this, and then we will move on. I hope that Germany, calmly conducting its own internal consultations, will come to a decision on the possible transfer of tanks. I am optimistic about this. Because the first step has been taken: we will start training programs for Ukrainian crews on Leopard 2,” Reznikov emphasized.

Polish Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau criticized Germany’s delay in delivering tanks to Ukraine and said that Ukrainians are paying with their blood for Berlin’s hesitation.

“Arming Ukraine to repel Russian aggression is not some decision-making exercise. Ukrainian blood is shed for real. This is the price of delaying Leopard deliveries. We must act immediately,” Zbigniew Rau stressed.

Some Western countries, such as Poland and Finland, are already ready to provide Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine, but Germany, which produces these weapons, has not yet decided whether it will allow countries that have these tanks in service to supply them. Ukraine.

“This is a tank of the so-called fourth generation or third with a plus – such an autonomous fortress on tracks, capable of conducting an independent battle and destroying the enemy within a 360-degree radius. In fact, active protection systems allow the tank to be less vulnerable to the weapons that Russia has, and surveillance systems, control over military equipment allow you to work within a radius of 2.5-4 km, destroying both manpower and equipment of the enemy, ”says the expert on security issues Ivan Varchenko.

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky asked not to discuss the details, including the number of tanks in the aid package, but to provide principled support so that Ukraine can defend itself against Russian terror. Also, in a video message to the members of the contact group on defense of Ukraine, the president called on allies to provide longer-range missiles and F-16 fighters.

“I can thank you hundreds of times, and it will be completely fair and honest, given all that we have already done. But hundreds of thanks are not hundreds of tanks. We can all say a thousand words, but I cannot replace with words the guns that are needed against Russian artillery, or anti-aircraft missiles that are needed to protect people from Russian airstrikes,” the head of state emphasized.

As for the transfer of aviation, the Netherlands has already stated that it is ready to consider the possibility of supplying F-16 fighter jets to Kyiv if the Ukrainian government requests them. Washington will agree with the idea of partners to transfer F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine, this was confirmed by the United States Ambassador to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe Michael Carpenter.

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