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Spokesman for Ukrainian Air Force Laments ‘Can’t Maintain’ the F-16s

Yury Ignat, a spokesman for the Ukrainian Air Force, admitted on Jan. 13 on national TV that while Ukraine will “probably” transition from Soviet-era jets to those made by Western sources, it will face many challenges—both in logistics, parts and training—in maintaining the new jets.

As RT reported, “Different countries have one, or at most two types of planes. As of today, we have four types of Soviet-era planes. We want to take on the Western F-16s and more.… It will be extremely difficult to maintain and operate different types of aircraft,” Ignat said.

Sweden has also promised delivery of its Gripen jet, but must first wait to be accepted into NATO before transferring them to Ukraine.

Denmark and the Netherlands have led the effort to send F-16 fighter jets and to train Ukrainian pilots to fly them.

However, it’s one thing to be able to fly and land the jet, quite another to train pilots to operate in a combat mode, or to learn specific combat tactics.

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