Pakistani billionaire gifts fighter jets to Ukraine

Islamabad Telegraph Report

Islamabad: In an unprecedented move, Pakistani billionaire Mohammad Zahoor, the former publisher of Kyiv Post, has gifted fighter jets to the Ukraine Air Force in its battle as Russia’s invasion of the Eastern European country continues.

The billionaire’s wife’s revelation surprised millions across the globe when she said her husband, a businessman of Pakistan origin, has recently bought two fighter jets for the Air Force of Ukraine to help it fight against Russian aggression. Reportedly, Mr. Zahoor’s wife, Ukrainian singer Kamaliya Zahoor, said that her husband and other wealthy friends had been quietly helping Ukraine in its fight against Russia. She informed that her husband helped purchase two jets for Ukraine’s air force.

“(Mohammad) gave me the green light to tell this. Because they hid these [actions]. They gave two fighter jets to Ukraine and help Ukraine,” she said, as per the media outlet.

It is to mention that since the Russia-Ukraine war broke, Mr Zahoor, who used to live in Ukraine and was the former owner of the Ukrainian newspaper Kyiv Post, has been pushing to ensure the safe evacuation of Ukrainian citizens. The Pakistan-born British businessman has been reportedly attempting to mobilize funds and help evacuate refugees to the UK and other parts of Europe. As per Newsweek, he had also continued to meet with heads of state and other influential people to ensure safe passage for Ukrainians.

Speaking to Arab News in March, Mr. Zahoor also called on the people of the world to support and side with Ukraine as it fights back against Russian aggression.

“I am openly taking the side of Ukraine because after seeing [reports from] Western, Ukrainian and Russian media, I can see and decide who is telling the truth. This is the time actually for everyone to speak up for Ukraine otherwise every big country is going to swallow its next-door neighbor,” he said.

Buy Me a Fighter Jet

Ukrainian campaign launched by the billionaire has been asking the world’s wealthiest people for help defending the country from invading Russian troops — and it’s doing so with a five-word slogan: “Buy me a fighter jet.”

Those behind the initiative say that governments around the world are “afraid of escalation and the conflict spreading beyond Ukraine” and therefore will not send jets or impose a no-fly zone — both of which Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has repeatedly sought from NATO and the United States since the war began in late February.

According to Reuters, Russian and Russian-backed forces are still in control of an area of Ukraine about the size of Greece along the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea, and in Ukraine’s east bordering Russia. But the Russian forces have been driven out of the area around the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv in the northeast in the past two weeks.

Fighter Jets which Ukraine Airforce can Fly

Perhaps the most eye-popping of today’s pledges to ship weapons to the Ukrainian military was the European Union’s announcement that it would soon send fighter jets. Would Ukrainian pilots really be able to jump in a donated jet and fly into combat?

Herbert “Hawk” Carlisle says sure, if it’s a type they already know how to fly.

“It really would not be a big step, going from a Ukrainian MiG-29 to a Polish MiG-29,” said Carlisle, a retired general who oversaw U.S. Air Force fighter jets as head of Air Combat Command.

The EU official who made Sunday’s announcement said he understands that the Ukrainian Air Force has no time to get up to speed on unfamiliar aircraft.

“They need the kind of fighters…that the Ukrainian force is able to operate,” EU policy chief Josep Borrell said. “We know what kind of planes, and some member states have these kinds of planes.” Borrell did not say what kinds those were.

US aid to Ukraine since the Russian invasion begins

The United States Congress has approved a massive $40bn military and humanitarian aid package for Ukraine, an “unprecedented” sum that US legislators say will help the country defend against Russia’s continued invasion. The bill, previously passed by the House of Representatives, passed in the Senate on Thursday by an overwhelming 86-to-11 vote, sending the measure to President Joe Biden for his signature.

The Biden administration has already provided Ukraine with more than $2.5 billion in aid since Russia launched its invasion on Feb. 24. U.S. support has included 25,000 helmets, more than 50 million bullets, and 100 Switchblade drones — small unmanned weapons packed with explosives that are designed to hover above targets before striking with precision.

Leave a Reply