Sweden suspends delivery of Gripen Jets to Ukraine amid coalition’s F-16 focus

Some member states of the air defence coalition have requested Sweden to pause the planned delivery of Gripen jets to Ukraine, said Swedish Defence Minister Pal Jonson in Brussels.

"This is because the current focus is on the implementation of the F-16 system," he explained.

Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, and Norway have pledged to provide Ukraine with F-16 fighter jets, with the first aircraft expected to be delivered this summer.

"We do not rule out the possibility that this (delivery of Gripen jets) may become relevant in the future, but for now, Ukraine's focus is on implementing the F-16 program," Jonson added.

According to the minister, delivering Gripen jets contradicts the coalition's views on simultaneously introducing two different fighter jet systems in Ukraine.

Earlier, the Commander-in-Chief of the Swedish Armed Forces, General Michael Byden, stated that a political decision regarding the Gripen jets is awaited.

Minister Jonson also noted that the decision to transfer Gripen jets to Ukraine depends on whether Sweden becomes a NATO ally. On March 7 of this year, Sweden completed its NATO accession procedure.

The Saab JAS 39 Gripen is a fourth-generation multi-role fighter jet designed for versatility. The abbreviation JAS stands for Jakt (fighter), Attack (attack aircraft), and Spaning (reconnaissance). The jet is in service with Sweden, Hungary, the Czech Republic, the UK, Brazil, Thailand, and South Africa. A total of 264 such aircraft have been produced.

  War in Ukraine, Sweden, Gripen