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Zagreb, Croatia (AP) —The Croatian government replaced a dilapidated fleet of Soviet-era aircraft on Wednesday, about € 1 billion ($ 1.2 billion) from France to strengthen the air force amid prolonged tensions. Approved to purchase a considerable number of 12 Rafale fighters. Balkan Peninsula.
The used jet contract will be signed on Thursday when French President Emmanuel Macron visits Croatia. This is the first time a French head of state has visited Croatia since it was separated from the former Yugoslav Federation during the 1991-95 war.
The French aircraft selection announced in May followed a long bidding process that was plagued by delays. Other offers included a new F-16 from the United States, a new JAS-39 gripen aircraft from Sweden, and a used F-16 from Israel.
Government officials said Wednesday that the purchase of the aircraft would cover Croatia’s needs to protect its skies for the next 30 years, and the package would include a training process for missiles and Croatian pilots.
During a visit to Macron on Thursday, two Rafale will make the Croatian capital an elevated road, officials said.
Croatian officials have previously stated that the purchase is worth € 999 million and will involve 10 single-seater and two 2-seater F3R Rafale twin-engine aircraft. The first six Rafale will be delivered in 2024 and the rest will be delivered the following year.
French jets will replace the Soviet-era MiG-21, which was first developed in the 1950s, and its resources will expire in 2024. Most of the MiGs were originally robbed by the Yugoslav army, which tried to prevent Croatia from leaving the former Selves. The dominant coalition.
NATO and Croatia, a member of the European Union, faced a mini-arms race with neighboring Russia’s ally, Serbia. Serbia recently received six used MiG-29 fighters from Russia and four more from Belarus.
Serbian President Alexander Vucci, who will meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday, said Wednesday that “big” announcements about additional military purchases by Serbia are expected in March.
He didn’t elaborate, but there have been years of talk of Russia supplying Serbia with an S-400 surface-to-air missile system, bringing sophisticated rockets closer to the NATO borders.
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Croatia approves purchase of French jet before Macron visits | WGN Radio 720
Source link Croatia approves purchase of French jet before Macron visits | WGN Radio 720