February 8, 2023

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In addition to tanks, the Netherlands should consider supplying F-16s to Ukraine.

In addition to tanks, the Netherlands should consider supplying F-16s to Ukraine.

AP

There is political support within and outside the coalition for supplying Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine. The Netherlands should also consider supplying F-16 fighter jets if Ukraine requests it. That’s what Rep. Robin Breckelmans (VVD) and Tom van der Lee (GroenLinks) said on Wednesday. news hour.

“Ukraine has been seeking rapprochement with the rest of Europe for some time now, and Putin’s forces are tying together war crimes, which means we must support the Ukrainians,” says van der Lee. We need to enable them to defend themselves with modern weapons.”

Buy German tanks?

After weeks of indecision, Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced on Wednesday that Germany would deliver 14 Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine. Other countries also receive permission from Berlin to field their German tanks.

This allows Norway to go ahead with the plan of fielding four to eight Tigers. Poland also wants to deliver the coveted fourteen tanks. In addition, the United Kingdom sends 14 Challenger 2 tanks and the United States 31 tanks M1 Abrams tank to Ukraine.

The Netherlands is also ready to supply Ukraine with more weapons: from Leopard 2 tanks to F-16 fighter jets.

Although the Netherlands itself does not have any tanks, the cabinet said last week that it was ready to pay To leopards that other countries want to supply to Ukraine. In addition, the Netherlands leased eighteen Leopard tanks from Germany. On Tuesday, Prime Minister Mark Rutte said in Brussels that the Netherlands might use those tanks can buy To give them to Ukraine.

We are not supplying weapons to Ukraine to strike Russia.

Robin Brickelmans, VVD

On Thursday, the House of Representatives will discuss additional arms supplies to Ukraine. MPs Berkelmann (VVD) and Van der Lee (GroenLinks) support the supply of the Panthers.

In 2011, the Netherlands sold 100 tanks of caliber to Finland austerity tour during the financial crisis. Since then, Holland has only rented tanks. “It is important that the battalion we have is not lost, for example if we send in so many tanks that the battalion has very few tanks left,” says Brikelmans.

Rota: “We still have to see if we turn over all 18 Panthers. We have to see how many tanks are involved and which holes fall after that. Of course you have to keep checking if you can still defend yourself. But you shouldn’t It so happens that Russia wins, because our security will also be in danger. That is why we must be ready to go very far in our support of Ukraine.

fighter jets

In addition to tanks, Ukraine orders F-16s. Is it possible for the Netherlands to supply these combat aircraft? Preckelmans: “It is theoretically possible. But I think it would be better to decide on this in a coalition of several countries.”

Van der Lee agrees, although he believes it is also important to have clear agreements with Ukraine. “If we want to supply F-16s, we will also have to train pilots as soon as possible – it’s not just an airplane. In addition, the F-16 has a great range and can also be used to actively attack in Russia. With these types of long-range weapons, We are seriously looking at the risks involved.”

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Berkelmann agrees. “We do not supply weapons to Ukraine to strike Russia. If the Netherlands sends F-16s, it should be on the condition that they are not used in Russia.”

It’s not that we only supply Dutch equipment, says Prime Minister Rutte. “We are still busy buying a lot of new equipment. We may also buy things and give them away sometime.”

However, the fear of escalation remains once the West supplies Ukraine with more weapons. Van der Lee: “This danger is simply there and we have to be aware of that as well. At the same time, the provision of weapons is really different from the deployment of NATO forces. I think this is the absolute red line that all other government leaders have already followed, and rightly so, she indicated.”

Rutte also agrees that Holland’s readiness should be watched closely. But it will not stop if Ukraine loses. It is in our interest that the Russians lose.