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Ukraine’s Air Force spokesman Yevlash explains why Ukraine needs faulty F-16s

30 April, 2024 Tuesday
20:33

Illya Yevlash, a spokesman for the Ukrainian Air Force, said that Ukraine needs defective F-16 fighter jets, as their parts can serve as "donors" for operational aircraft

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He said this on the air of Pryamyi TV channel.

"Even if these are defective aircraft, they are extremely necessary. ‘Donors’ are a commonplace practice in different countries... It is a normal practice that if one of the parts does not work, the remaining parts can be used to replace other components," explained Yevlash.

The Air Force spokesperson also noted that fighters that have lost their combat capability can be used for repairs and other purposes determined by the command.

F-16 fighter jets for Ukraine

On May 21, US President Joe Biden approved the training of Ukrainians on F-16s. Volodymyr Zelenskyy assured that Ukraine would not use these aircraft to strike at Russian territory. 

Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba says that the first F-16 fighter jets are likely to fly in Ukraine's skies by the end of March 2024.

On August 17, the United States approved the shipment of F-16 multi-role fighters to Ukraine.

At the same time, Denmark said it would supply Ukraine with the aircraft if they were not used in Russia. 

The Netherlands will provide 42 fighter jets. At the same time, Norway will provide Ukraine with F-16s, but the exact number is unknown.

On September 15, Belgium joined the training of Ukrainian pilots on F-16s. Earlier, the Belgian Defense Ministry said it would not provide Ukraine with F-16 fighters because they are outdated and in poor condition. Such aircraft are dangerous to operate.

On October 11, Danish Defense Minister Troels Lund Poulsen said that the country would be able to deliver the first F-16s to Ukraine in March-April 2024.

On October 12, the media reported that the Netherlands would send F-16s to Romania, where Ukrainian pilots would begin training in a few weeks.

On October 26, Ukrainian pilots began flight training on F-16s at an air base in Arizona, USA.

On November 1, the Pentagon said that the training in Arizona could last from 5 to 9 months.

In early January 2024, Pentagon spokesman Brigadier General Patrick Ryder said that Ukrainian pilots would complete training on F-16 fighter jets this year.

On February 8, Ambassador to the Netherlands Oleksandr Karasevych said that Ukraine would receive F-16 fighter jets from the Netherlands this year, but the exact date was not announced.

On February 17, on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said that the delivery of F-16 multi-role fighters to Ukraine was on schedule.

On March 1, the Air Force said that Ukrainian pilots are practicing strikes on air and ground targets using F-16s, but the transition to them cannot be quick.

On March 18, Romanian President Klaus Iohannis approved the training of Ukrainian pilots on F-16 fighter jets at the country's military base in Fătesti.

On March 22, the first 10 Ukrainian pilots completed basic training on F-16 fighter jets in the United Kingdom.

On March 29, the Belgian government approved a decision to allocate €100 million to Ukraine for the maintenance of F-16 fighter jets.

On April 26, reports indicated that Belgium had decided to supply Ukraine with F-16 fighter jets this year, but the exact timing is not yet known.

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