The Czech Republic will send fighter jets to protect Slovakia’s airspace starting in September, Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala said on Sunday.
“We will help Slovakia until it has new planes at its disposal,” Fiala said during a Czech television debate with Slovak Prime Minister Eduard Heger. “The government will certainly approve it.”
Slovakia previously asked NATO allies for help to patrol its skies after it decided to ground its fleet of Soviet-designed MiG-29 aircraft and started talks to send them to Ukraine. Bratislava is expecting a delayed delivery of American F-16 aircraft in 2024.
Fiala said it was essential Ukraine had the weapons needed to fight for both its independence and for the West’s security and freedom. “They are fighting for us,” he added.
As the Russian war in Ukraine enters its fifth month, Ukrainian President Zelenskyy urged NATO allies to ramp up their military aid.