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Greece may transfer F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine, media reports

Greece may transfer F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine, media reports Illustrative photo (Getty Images)
Author: Liliana Oleniak

The Greek government may transfer up to 32 F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine. However, this requires the approval of France, News Break reports.

According to the agency, the Greek government plans to sell 108 fighters to be decommissioned (32 F-16C/-D Block 30, 24 Mirage 2000-5 Mk. 2 and 33 F-4E PI2000 units).

"Indeed, in July 2022, a positive opinion of the relevant parliamentary committee was requested for the sale of fighters and related and peripheral equipment (spare parts, simulators, instruments, and materials), the cost of which was estimated at 117 million euros. The sale never took place, and the condition of the fighters in open storage is constantly deteriorating," the article says.

The cost of 108 fighters can be approximately 2 to 2.5 billion euros.

"The 32 F-16C/-D Block 30s, the transfer of which to Ukraine is virtually certain, are another matter entirely. It is worth reminding that during their service, fighters of this type have undergone two design upgrades and have now spent about 60% of their service life on average," the article says.

According to the journalists, it is not as certain where the 24 Mirage 2000-5 Mk.2s, of which 14 are newly built and the rest are modernized Mirage 2000EGM/-BGMs, could go.

"The logical options are a transfer to Ukraine or a sale to India, of course, with the approval of France," the article says.

F-16 for Ukraine

Last year, Denmark and the Netherlands promised to provide Ukraine with several dozen F-16 fighters. However, to receive the fighter jets, Ukraine had to first train pilots and maintenance personnel, as well as prepare the necessary infrastructure in Ukraine.

According to Ukrainian Air Force spokesman Ilia Yevlash, the appearance of F-16s in Ukraine will be a surprise for the enemy. Two groups of Ukrainian pilots are in the final stages of training.

At the same time, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg warned that F-16s, like any weapon, would not be a "silver bullet" in Ukraine's war with Russia. But, according to him, these fighters will be important on the battlefield.