Macron does not rule out anything: Biden says “no” to fighter jet delivery

Macron excludes nothing
Biden says ‘no’ to fighter jet delivery

So far, the US government has said that support for Ukraine is based on its needs and that no weapon system is ruled out in principle. When asked about F-16 fighter jets, however, President Biden is now drawing a red line. French President Macron, on the other hand, considers a delivery of combat aircraft to be fundamentally possible.

US President Joe Biden has canceled a delivery of F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine. When asked by journalists if he was in favor of delivering the fighter jets to Ukraine, Biden answered “no” in Washington. Shortly before, French President Emmanuel Macron had not ruled out the delivery of fighter jets to Ukraine. “Basically, nothing is forbidden,” said Macron during a visit to The Hague. At the same time, he warned of the risk of an escalation and named a number of “criteria” that would have to be met for a delivery of French fighter jets.

Macron said Kyiv must first make an official “request” before delivering fighter jets. Ukraine “has not done this so far”. In addition, the weapons should “not escalate” and “do not touch Russian soil, but only support the defensive capability”. Any delivery of arms should also not “weaken the capacity of the French armed forces”.

“No taboo, but a big step”

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte agreed to Macron’s criteria for fighter jet deliveries. For his part, he emphasized that there was “no taboo, but it would be a big step” if fighter jets were delivered to Kyiv. The Netherlands have not received a corresponding request from Kyiv either, said Rutte.

In an interview last week, Biden’s Deputy National Security Advisor Jon Finer did not categorically rule out a delivery of F-16 jets. In principle, the USA would not rule out any “specific system” but would constantly examine which weapons Ukraine would need in the war against Russia. Chancellor Olaf Scholz has repeatedly ruled out the delivery of combat aircraft to Kyiv and warned of a “constant bidding war” in the debate on arms deliveries.

The Ukrainian leadership is currently urging its Western allies to supply fighter jets. Former Ukrainian Ambassador to Germany and now Ukraine’s Deputy Foreign Minister Andriy Melnyk said the allies should create a strong coalition of fighter jets, with US F-16s and F-35s, Eurofighters and Tornados, French Rafales and Swedish Gripen jets.

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