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Belgium will transfer F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine no earlier than 2025

At a press conference in Brussels, Belgian Prime Minister Alexander de Croo shared plans for possible support for Ukraine in the current conflict, discussing the supply of F-16 fighters. According to him, although Belgium is actively involved in the training mission to train Ukrainian pilots and technical personnel, the aircraft themselves will not be available for transfer until next year.

Alexander de Croo noted that Belgian F-16s are still needed by Belgium itself, and only from the beginning of next year, when the process of replacing these aircraft with more modern F-35s begins, will it be possible to discuss the transfer of F-16s to Ukraine. The final decision on this issue will be taken by the next Belgian government, which is not expected until 2025.

It also became known that the Belgian Armed Forces currently have only 24 serviceable F-16s, which are used not only to patrol the Belgian borders, but also to perform security duties within NATO missions. This calls into question the possibility of transferring fighters without compromising the combat capability of the Belgian Air Force.

The issue of supplying F-16s to Ukraine is causing lively debate in Belgian society and among military experts. Critics of such deliveries have expressed concerns about the potential reduction in the country's defense capabilities. However, according to the head of the Belgian Ministry of Defense, Ludivine Dedonder, the transfer of “several” F-16s could become possible after 2025 if timely delivery of F-35s from the United States is ensured.

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