Slovakian government approved sending its retired miG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine.
The decision follows months of deliberation and discussions. It makes Slovakia the second country of the “MiG-29 coalition” to finalize the transfer.
Slovakian Prime Minister Eduard Heger announced the news at a press conference on March 17, 2023, local media reports.
The package will also include anti-aircraft missiles of an unspecified model, the reports add.
Slovakia’s decision comes a day after the Polish President Andrzej Duda announced that the first polish MiG-29s will be transferred to Ukraine within days.
Slovakia retired its fleet of 11 MiG-29s in 2022 and planned to replace them with newly-ordered Lockheed Martin F-16s since 2018.
However, the order was delayed to late 2023. In the meantime, an agreement was reached for Poland and Czechia to protect Slovakian airspace until the new aircraft arrive.
Slovakia has been saying it is ready to deliver the aircraft to Ukraine since mid-2022, however, the discussions regarding the particularities of the transfer have been ongoing ever since.
In December 2023 the Slovakian Minister of Foreign Affairs Rastislav Kacher said the country is finally ready to transfer the aircraft.