Madrid: Spain cannot provide Ukraine with F-16 fighters because it does not have that type of jets, but remains committed to supporting Kiev, Spanish Defense Minister Margarita Robles said on Tuesday.
“We are supporting Ukraine, we will continue to support Ukraine, because we think we have to be and remain united, but Spain does not have F-16s at the moment,” she said ahead of a meeting of EU defense ministers in Brussels.
The minister added that although Spain has trained over a thousand Ukrainian soldiers and a number of medics, Madrid has no resources to train Ukrainian pilots in the use of F-16 fighters.
Earlier in the day, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said the F-16 training program has already begun in a number of European countries.
NATO allies recently pledged to supply Ukraine with F-16 fighter jets, the latest addition to the list of lethal weapons the collective West has provided to Ukraine as it allegedly gears up for a counter-offensive against Russian forces.
Russian Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov said the possible transfer of F-16s to Ukraine raises the question of NATO’s involvement in the conflict.