Denmark to end F-16 training program for Ukrainian pilots by end of year

Ali _Cobanoglu /

Denmark will cease its F-16 fighter jet training program for Ukrainian pilots by the end of the year, Danish Defense Minister Troels Lund Poulsen said at a press conference on June 24, 2024.

Poulsen said that Denmark will be transitioning to the newer F-35 jets, which will use the Skrydstrup Air Base where Ukrainian pilots are currently being trained.

“We have to devote all our unmitigated energy on this, hence we cannot continue training Ukrainian pilots post 2024,” Poulsen was quoted to have said during the press conference.  

By the end of 2024, Denmark will have trained around 20 Ukrainian pilots.

The minister stated that Denmark will still contribute to the training of Ukrainian pilots, but in other countries. Poulsen also said that Denmark will deliver 19 F-16s to Ukraine once the pilot training is completed.

The United States, the Netherlands and Denmark are leading the international coalition tasked with training F-16 pilots, technicians, and support personnel for the Ukrainian Air Force. The coalition was formed in July 2023 during the Vilnius Summit. 

Denmark has ordered 27 F-35s but has been met with delivery delays due to Lockheed Martin struggling to complete an upgrade known as Technology Refresh 3.

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