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Defense Express explains why Ukraine has not received F-16s yet

28 May, 2024 Tuesday
20:15

Military expert, editor-in-chief of Defense Express Oleh Katkov noted that the transfer of F-16 fighter jets is a large-scale infrastructure project with a global task

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He said this on the Espreso TV channel.

"First, air defense and airfield protection must be deployed. Because any functional fighters that end up in Ukraine will become the number one target. The Kremlin will deploy everything it has to destroy them on the ground. For the Russians, it is important to destroy the efforts of many countries, which have really dragged on. F-16s were promised back in the winter of this year. Now we are talking about summer. I hope it's about this summer.

At the same time, it is clear why there is such a pause. It's because the US has been blocking aid for six months. Given that these jets are equipped with American weapons and these jets needed to be upgraded, and this depends on the provision of US assistance. The issue of strengthening air defense is also being addressed," Katkov said.

The military expert recalled that a month ago, the spokesman for the Air Force Command said that F-16s would be located in protected areas.

"This means underground facilities where the aircraft will be located and serviced. The F-16s will be in constant maneuver and regularly change air bases. This is a fairly large-scale infrastructure project, and it is a global task," Katkov said.

  • The first group of Ukrainian pilots has completed training on F-16s at an Arizona military base in the United States. The Air Force noted that even two such aircraft would significantly strengthen the Ukrainian army.
  • At the end of April, it was also reported that Belgium had decided to supply Ukraine with F-16 fighter jets this year, but the exact timing was not known. Later it was reported that the first F-16s from the West would arrive in Ukraine by July.
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