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​Ukraine’s Air Force Announced When F-16 Fighter Jets Will Appear in Ukraine

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F-16 multirole fighter aircraft / Photo credit: U.S. Air Force
F-16 multirole fighter aircraft / Photo credit: U.S. Air Force

A representative of the Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine stated that it is not necessary to wait for the appearance of Western aircraft in Ukraine until the end of the year

The transfer of F-16 fighters is a complex process that includes a complex of activities. The aircraft are unlikely to appear in Ukrainian skies before the end of this year. Yuriy Ignat, the spokesman of the Air Force Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, stated this on Espresso.

"Statements regarding the arrival of F-16 fighters in Ukraine vary somewhat. But it won't happen quickly, they are unlikely to appear by the end of the year. There were statements by our diplomats that by the end of winter, in the spring. Let me remind you that the process of delivering the aircraft is a very complicated one, which includes a range of activities. This includes preparing the infrastructure, pilots, and aviation engineers who need to be taught how to use and program the bombs and missiles that will attach to the aircraft. No country in the world has ever had the experience to switch from a Soviet aircraft to a Western one in such a short time, and we are the first. That's why we hear such different terms in the statements of politicians regarding the F-16," Yuriy Ignat noted.

Read more: ​Ukraine to Receive F-16 Fighter Jets from Belgium in 2025
Ukraine’s Air Force Announced When F-16 Fighter Jets Will Appear in Ukraine, Yurii Ihnat, spokesperson of the Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Defense Express
Yurii Ihnat, spokesperson of the Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine / Photo provided to 24 Channel

At the same time, he pointed out that Ukrainian pilots are not trained in Romania, because the training center is still under construction.

"The media made a mistake when they reported that F-16s were flying from the Netherlands to the Romanian center. The training center in Romania is still under construction. Its training and material base is being completed so that as many pilots, instructors and aviation technicians as possible can be trained there. This center is located close to Ukraine, which is very convenient. The jets that have already been donated by the Netherlands will serve as training aircraft. There are single-seat and two-seat combat training aircraft, and the pilot takes off with an instructor. Currently, such flights are taking place in Denmark, where pilots are already flying with instructors and performing flight missions," Yuriy Ignat concluded.

Ukraine’s Air Force Announced When F-16 Fighter Jets Will Appear in Ukraine, Defense Express
The F-16B fighter has two seats, the front one for the student pilot, and the rear seat for the instructor / Photo credit: U.S. Air Force

As Defense Express reported, the first group of Ukrainian pilots, engineers left for F-16 training late August. We also wrote, that Ukrainian pilots stared training on F-16 with the 162nd Wing in the United States late October.

Read more: ​Ukrainian F-16s Will be Maintained in Poland, Pentagon Says