The Swedish JAS 39 Gripen fighter jets can’t be used to bomb Libyan leader Muammar Qadhafi’s ground forces, but will be able to return fire if they are attacked.

Swedish lawmakers have approved a plan to send up to eight fighter jets and one transport plane to join the NATO—led air operations over Libya.

The centre—right government’s proposal was passed in a 240—18 vote in the 349—seat Parliament. Five lawmakers abstained and the rest were absent.

The Swedish JAS 39 Gripen fighter jets can’t be used to bomb Libyan leader Muammar Qadhafi’s ground forces, but will be able to return fire if they are attacked.

The Swedish Air Force says the first planes will depart this weekend and will be ready to help enforce the no—fly zone in the middle of next week.

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