Sweden explores potential supply of JAS 39 Gripen Fighters to Ukraine
The Swedish government is considering donating JAS 39 Gripen fighter jets to Ukraine.
SVT reported on this with reference to Swedish radio station Ekot.
The Swedish government will soon, possibly as early as Thursday, September 14, 2023, instruct its armed forces to study the conditions of the planes’ shipment.
The Swedes want to find out how the transfer of the fighter jets will affect the country’s defense capabilities and how quickly the Royal Air Force will be able to get new replacement fighters.
The government wants to know, among other things, how a handover would affect Sweden’s defense capabilities and how quickly Sweden could get new Gripen fighters.
According to Ekot, the Swedish Armed Forces will provide their response in November, after which the government will be able to decide whether to send fighter jets to Ukraine.
In August, Militarnyi reported that Ukrainian pilots were testing Swedish JAS 39 Gripen fighter aircraft.
At the same time, Swedish officials have stated that the country has no plans to transfer Gripen fighter jets to Ukraine.
After that, the Swedish opposition called for the transfer of fighter jets to Ukraine, but on the condition that the country join NATO.
“For the offensive to succeed, Ukraine needs to strengthen its air defense. We cannot allow Russia to win. A Jas Gripen fighter jet would be of great importance for Ukraine,” emphasized Magdalena Andersson.
At the same time, the Swedish Social Democratic Party called on the government to immediately begin analyzing the consequences for Sweden’s defense in the event of the transfer of such equipment, as well as the length of training that Ukrainian pilots would need and how long it might take to organize the delivery of aircraft.
Currently, the Swedish Air Force has 94 Gripen aircraft: 70 of the C version and 24 of the D version. In total, the country has ordered 204 aircraft, of which:
- 98 aircraft are in the Swedish Air Force;
- 32 aircraft were utilized and dismantled;
- 28 aircraft are leased in the Czech Republic and Hungary;
- 12 aircraft were sold to Thailand;
- 4 aircraft are used as a flying laboratory;
- 4 aircraft were lost in the accident;
- 2 aircraft were handed over to the museum.
In addition, in order to save about 30 mothballed aircraft, the A/B version will become a platform for upgrading to the E/F version. In total, the country aims to maintain 60 E version aircraft in its air force.
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