The Pentagon announced on Wednesday that the United States has categorically rejected Poland’s offer to hand over its MiG-29 aircraft to the U.S. military and then deliver them to Ukraine.
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After Wednesday’s exchange between US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and his Polish counterpart, Pentagon spokesman John Kirby told a news conference that Washington “does not support the transfer of additional combat aircraft to the Ukrainian Air Force today.”
“We are of the view that adding aircraft to the Ukrainian stockpile is not likely to significantly change the effectiveness of the Ukrainian air force against Russian capabilities” in the air, he added.
In addition, “intelligence services believe that the transfer (of the MiG-29s) to Ukraine can be seen as a one-step (to the conflict) and could lead to a major Russian response that would increase the likelihood of a military escalation. With NATO ” John Kirby said.
Warsaw said on Tuesday that it was “ready to transfer all of its MiG-29 aircraft to the Ramstein base (in Germany) without delay and without charge and make them available to the United States government.”
This sudden announcement caused a diplomatic stalemate with Washington, which rejected the offer, believing it could be a source of “serious concerns” for NATO.
On Wednesday, Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov called it a “highly undesirable and potentially dangerous scenario.”
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