Ukraine's ambassador to the Netherlands, Oleksandr Horin, is confident that Kyiv will receive F-16 fighter jets this year, as reported by Ukrinform news agency.
"Indeed, recently Ollongren [the Dutch Defense Minister] indicated that Ukraine will receive F-16 fighters from the Netherlands this year. We are aware of when exactly the Dutch fighters will be ready for delivery to Ukraine, but naturally, we will not disclose this information. However, we can clearly speak about the number of fighters we will receive from the Netherlands; this was mentioned by both Mrs. Ollongren and Prime Minister Rutte. There will be 18 previously promised fighters being prepared for transfer to Ukraine, plus an additional six that were announced recently. Beyond the fighters that the Netherlands is transferring to Ukraine, another 18 aircraft are being sent to a training center in Romania to prepare Ukrainian pilots, of which five are already in Romania. Thus, we are talking about a total of 42 fighters that the Netherlands is providing to aid Ukraine's victory," noted Horin.
He also added that the Netherlands is allocating €122 million to Ukraine for ammunition, weaponry, and cybersecurity.
"Typically, when the allocation of a new aid package is announced, it is immediately stated how it is structured. Out of these 122 million euros you asked about, a certain part is given to Ukraine to strengthen our IT capabilities. Another portion of the funds will be spent on purchasing artillery shells – something we currently have a great need for. It involves signing contracts for the procurement of shells, but we must understand that these €122 million euros are just a small fraction of the total military aid budget allocated for this year by the Netherlands for Ukraine, which amounts to €2 billion," stressed the ambassador.
Previously, Commander of Ukrainian Joint Forces Lieutenant General Serhiy Naiev had stated that Ukraine expects to receive Western F-16 fighters accompanied by missiles with a range of 300 to 500 kilometers. Defense Express analysts have suggested that this could be the AGM-158 JASSM tactical stealth cruise missiles. Experts emphasize that this weapon is widely used, is serially produced, and is available for export.