Washington finally agreed to sell new fourth-generation F-16 fighter jets to Turkey after Ankara approved Sweden’s membership in NATO. In total, the US Congress approved the sale of 40 new and 79 upgraded F-16 aircraft.
The United States will sell new F-16 fighter jets, as well as supply kits necessary to upgrade the aircraft that are already in service with the Turkish Air Force. The US Embassy in Turkey confirmed that the US Congress has approved the upcoming deal.
The decision was approved almost without objections. Washington timely played its trump card and has no more reasons to postpone the transfer of its modern aircraft to the Turks.
‘The Turkish F-16 fleet is crucial for NATO forces in terms of ensuring future interoperability between the allies’, US Ambassador to Turkey said.
The Turks will reportedly receive modernization kits in 2025. New fighters reportedly will not come to Turkey before 2029.
In total, the Turks have 270 old F-16 fighters in service, some of them will be upgraded by Turkish means, and some will be decommissioned over time. Ankara has been trying to buy 40 F-16 Block 70 fighters in the United States for several years. The Turks also asked for 80 kits for upgrading the F-16C/D Block 30/40/50 fighters in service to the Block 70 level.
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