Poland is ready to hand over MiG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine, but only as a part of an international coalition, Polish President Andrzej Duda told CNN International during an interview.
Duda spoke to CNN International during his stay in the United Arab Emirates, where he was attending a UN conference. He told CNN that Poland was ready to hand over the MIG-29 fighter jets that serve in its air force to Ukraine, and that he was certain Ukraine would be ready and willing to use them immediately.
Duda stated that while Ukraine would likely welcome the MiG fighters, in the future, the country would want to use NATO standard equipment. Duda added that Ukraine will likely receive F-16 jets at some point.
This is why “training Ukrainian pilots is important and necessary,” said Duda. He also revealed that according to his recent conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine’s key military need is currently long-range artillery “to push the enemy away and reduce losses arising from fighting at close quarters.”
He noted that “Russia is trying to crush Ukraine by the weight of numbers and equipment.”
According to the president of Poland, global peace depended on Russia losing in Ukraine because then the threat of “Russian imperialism” will be lifted from the countries of Central Europe and beyond, and they will be able to lead a peaceful existence.
Duda was non-committal when asked about reports that pro-Ukrainian groups stood behind the damage done to the Nord Stream pipelines. He only said he hoped the investigations identify the culprits. However, he said it would be beneficial for Europe for Nord Stream 2 to cease existing, as this would ensure Russia cannot make Western Europe dependent on its gas supplies.
Duda was also asked about Poland’s dispute with the EU over funds being blocked for alleged rule of law violations.
He replied by saying he was convinced the funds would eventually reach Poland and added that the blocking of the funds was in effect an attempt to remove the present government in Poland by EU institutions, which are dominated by the liberals and the left.
He accused them of attempting to influence the result of the Polish election and thereby endangering the democratic process.