Britain will help any country willing to send fighter jets to Ukraine, Sunak says

Munich Security Conference

MUNICH (Reuters) -Britain stands ready to support any country that was willing to send fighter jets to Ukraine right now, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said on Saturday, as he urged allies to maintain their support in the war against Russia.

Britain has offered strong support to Ukraine since Russia's invasion nearly a year ago, including through the delivery of weapons and training of troops.

It has so far refused to send fighter jets, saying the lengthy time needed to train pilots and substantial support crews required meant they would be of little immediate use, but Sunak told the annual Munich Security Conference on Saturday that Britain could help in other ways.

"We will happily provide a system to any country that is able to provide Ukraine with fighter jets right now. The UK stands ready to support those countries," he later told reporters.

He also said Western allies should consider how to ensure that Russia pays towards the reconstruction of Ukraine once the war has ended, and said the global community needed to recognise that a new framework was required to maintain long-term security.

"From human rights to reckless nuclear threats, from Georgia to Moldova, Russia has committed violation after violation against countries outside the collective security of NATO," he told the conference.

"And the international community's response has not been strong enough."

(Reporting by Muvija M and Kate Holton in London; editing by Jane Merriman and Alex Richardson)