Boris Johnson backs call for West to send fighter jets to Ukraine

But Johnson, who was in Washington for talks with senior politicians to bolster support for Ukraine, said its President Volodymyr Zelensky should be given all the equipment he needs.

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Former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has backed calls on Western leaders to supply fighter jets to Ukraine.

The current government in London has said it was not practical to provide sophisticated planes used by the RAF, such as Typhoons and F-35s, while U.S. President Joe Biden has ruled out sending F-16 fighters.

But Johnson, who was in Washington for talks with senior politicians to bolster support for Ukraine, said its President Volodymyr Zelensky should be given all the equipment he needs.

Asked about the F-16 situation, he told Fox News: “All I will say is that every time we have to say it is a mistake to give such and such an item of weaponry.

“We end up doing it and it ends up being the right thing for Ukraine.

“I remember being told it was the wrong idea to give them the anti-tank shoulder-launched missiles.

“Actually, they are indispensable and the U.S. under former U.S. president Donald Trump gave them the Javelins as well.’’

They were indispensable in the battles to repel the Russian tanks.

People said that they shouldn’t give the HIMARS (rocket launchers).

“I remember having arguments about the multiple-launch rocket systems, the MLRS.

“Actually, they have proved invaluable to the Ukrainians. We say the same about tanks.

“All I’m saying is save time, save money, save lives. Give the Ukrainians what they need as fast as possible.’’

Johnson rejected the idea that Russian President Vladimir Putin could be prepared to turn the war into a nuclear conflict.

He probably doesn’t even stop the Ukrainians if he did that and we would put his economy into such a cryogenic paralysis that Russia wouldn’t come out of it for decades so he’s not going to do that.

The government of current British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has said training Ukrainian pilots and ground crews was extremely sophisticated.

Typhoons and F-35s would take too long, though it did not oppose allies sending their own jets.

Biden said on Monday that he would not send warplanes to Kiev.