The Federal Government of Germany has agreed to deliver five MiG 29 fighter jets to Ukraine, as requested by the Polish government. The five aircraft originally belonged to the National People’s Army of the German Democratic Republic (GDR) and thus required an export license from Germany.
“I am pleased to announce that we can promise our Polish partners the delivery of five MiG-29s from former NVA stocks to Ukraine,” German defense minister Boris Pistorius said in a statement. “I welcome the fact that we in the Federal Government have reached this decision together. This shows that you can rely on Germany.”
According to the ministry, the MiG 29s can be used immediately by the Ukrainian armed forces, who already know how to operate the Soviet-made fighter jets. Poland currently has more than 20 MiG-29 jets that have been thoroughly modernized.
In March 2022, shortly after the beginning of the war, a plan to transfer the whole Polish fleet of MiG-29 fighters officially fell through, after Poland and the United States failed to reach an agreement.
However, in January 2023, rumors emerged that Poland had already delivered operational MiG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine in secret, but disassembled and labeled as spare parts.
In March 2023, Polish President Andrzej Duda officially announced the transfer of four MiG-29s to Ukraine. This suggests that the aircraft involved were likely acquired from the Czech Republic rather than Germany.