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Ukraine and partners sign memorandum for F-16 training and transfer

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In a significant development for Ukraine’s defense sector, the country’s Ministry of Defense, represented by Minister Oleksiy Reznikov, announced the acquisition of F-16 fighter jets. The news came after a memorandum was signed with 11 partner countries to facilitate the training of Ukrainian pilots and engineers on the advanced aircraft. The announcement was made during a press conference titled “Implementing Anti-Corruption Policies in the Defense Sector During Wartime,” held at the “Ukraine Media Center.”

Minister Reznikov expressed his gratitude to all the ministers involved and highlighted the positive response from the partnering nations. Originally, 10 countries had agreed to assist Ukraine with F-16 training, but recently Romania also joined the initiative, increasing the number to 11. The countries participating in the project are playing a vital role in boosting Ukraine’s capabilities in the air defense sector.

“We returned from Vilnius, where we signed the memorandum with 11 countries for the training of Ukrainian pilots on F-16s. It was initially 10 countries, but Romania decided to join as well. I thanked all the ministers involved in the process. I believe that the first training sessions for our pilots and engineer-technicians will commence in August in one of the partner countries,” Minister Reznikov stated.

The Minister further revealed that Poland, another partner in the project, has confirmed its commitment by providing equipment and resources for the training. As a result, Ukraine will simultaneously train pilots and engineers in several of these nations.

“While we conduct these training programs abroad, we will also focus on enhancing our home infrastructure. We will assess the capabilities of our airfields, where the F-16s will be stationed, and develop the necessary infrastructure such as shelters, supply stations, and fueling facilities. I discussed this matter with Ms. Anita Anand, the Canadian Minister of Defense, as they do not possess F-16s but support the idea of infrastructure development and will be part of this coalition. Once our infrastructure and pilots are ready to undertake combat missions, and our engineers are prepared to handle the technology, our partners will make the decision: ‘Okay, now the aircraft!'” explained Minister Reznikov.

The Minister acknowledged that this process would require some time, expressing optimism that it would likely be completed by the following year. This acquisition of F-16 fighter jets represents a significant step forward for Ukraine’s defense capabilities and strengthens the country’s position in the region.

With international support and collaborative efforts, Ukraine is poised to enhance its defense capabilities and readiness, ensuring a more secure future for the nation and its allies.

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