As the war progresses and the allies expect a counter-offensive in Ukraine, for which they have increased arms supplies, taboos have been overcome. First there were tanks and now fighters. Joe Biden opened the door to the delivery of F-16s after Volodymyr Zelensky assured him that they would not be used to attack Russia on its territory (although it could be against troops on Ukrainian soil). The European Union, through its High Representative, Josep Borrell, welcomed this decision.
“It is a good idea that the G7 countries have finally decided to prepare the ground for Ukraine with the fighters they need. The training of the pilots has started, which is the first thing,” said Borrell, who is confident that this type of material will be sent “soon.”
Sending fighters was a red line for some countries, like Germany. Foreign Minister Olaf Scholz categorically opposed such a move. Nor has the United States taken this step, which other allies such as Poland have called for. However, most left the door open depending on how the war unfolded. “I have a full guarantee from Zelensky that they will not use them to go ahead and move against Russia in their geographical territory. It’s a different matter if Russian troops are on the territory of Ukraine,” Biden said at the press conference held after the G7 meeting in Hiroshima.
The pressure to deliver these planes to Kiev has increased in recent weeks, and some countries such as the United Kingdom, the Netherlands or France have been forced to launch a “coalition” with this goal, which has begun training. pilots. Spanish Defense Minister Margarita Robles has always ruled out Spain sending fighters because it does not have the F-16s that Zelensky claims.
Borrell thanked the G7 movement, which marks a new stage in the conflict. The High Representative made this statement ahead of a meeting in Brussels with the foreign ministers of the 27 countries, where they will, among other things, analyze the new package of sanctions against Russia proposed by the European Commission, which mainly seeks to create mechanisms. To prevent these sanctions from being circumvented through third countries. They will also explore a new tranche of 500 million euros for weapons through the European Peace Fund.
For now, this package of sanctions has been blocked by Hungary, after Kyiv blacklisted OTP Bank for alleged Kremlin sponsorship. Borrell suggested there would be no green light this Monday, not only because of Budapest, but because there are “specific considerations” in the package that member states need to consider. The new package includes Chinese companies in the sanctions for the first time.
This is a sensitive issue at a time when the EU is trying to establish its own autonomous relationship with the Xi Jinping regime, and these relationships have caused tensions within the 27.separation) with Beijing, but that the risks of the relationship are minimized, that is, “risky” economic attitudes are reduced, especially in raw materials.
Source: El Diario