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After Ukraine request, Sweden PM says his country needs Gripens for its own defense

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The Prime Minister of Sweden, Ulf Kristersson, said on Monday that his country itself requires the Gripen fighter jets for its own defense and that there are no plans as of yet to send Gripens to Ukraine.

“Sweden is a geographically large country; we need to defend ourselves. We are not yet in NATO,” Kristersson said according to Swedish media outlet Omni.

He added: “It's a balance between what we can share with them and what we must have ourselves. Currently, we are part of the… F-16 coalition. We collaborate with 14 countries to ensure that Ukraine receives aviation capabilities.”

The Netherlands and Denmark committed on Sunday to send up to 61 F-16s to Ukraine during Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s visit.

Kristersson said: “We're not in that situation. We'll do everything to support them in the air, but there are currently no new commitments to provide Swedish aircraft to Ukraine.”

Zelenskyy had said on Sunday that the Ukrainian military has started participating in test flights on the Swedish Gripen combat aircraft and that Kyiv is in negotiations for these aircraft to “appear in [Ukrainian] skies”.

Read more:

Zelenskyy: Swedish-made Gripen fighter jets nearing appearance in Ukrainian skies

Zelenskyy secures 61 F-16s, says signal for more countries to donate combat aircraft

Germany: Latest F-16s supply to Ukraine will not pressure us to send Taurus missiles

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