Greece reportedly in talks to acquire up to 10 new Rafale fighters

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Greece is reportedly moving forward with the order of another batch of new Rafale fighter jets.  

As first reported by the Greek portal Defence Review on May 10, 2024, the talks between the Greek authorities and the French manufacturer Dassault Aviation have progressed to an advanced stage. Discussions are focused on acquiring up to 10 fighters built to the upcoming F4 standard. Executives from Dassault are expected to visit Athens in the coming weeks for negotiations.  

“The Hellenic Air Force General Staff has expressed the need to acquire 8 to 10 additional new aircraft to form another fighter squadron,” Defence Review reported. “Furthermore, he explicitly and categorically stated to the leadership of the Ministry of Defense that this is a fundamental condition for the withdrawal of Mirage 2000-5s to cover operational needs.” 

Modernizing the Hellenic Air Force fighter fleet

In January 2021, the French government received an order for 18 Rafale jets from Greece. 12 of these were previously used aircraft from the French Air Force, while the other six were brand-new jets manufactured to the F3R standard. The order also included a range of weapons, including Exocet anti-ship missiles and SCALP cruise missiles. 

In 2022, the Hellenic Air Force retired its Mirage 2000 EGM/BGM fleet. It still operates 24 Mirage 2000-5 air superiority fighters, currently flown by the 331 Squadron ‘Theseus.’ The modernization of these fighters, notably with Link-16 terminals to enhance communication with other aircraft, has been put on hold due to cost and effectiveness concerns.  

Greece announced plans to acquire up to 40 Rafale jets before 2025, along with 40 Lockheed Martin F-35A fifth-generation fighters. 

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