Czech Republic gives Ukraine attack helicopters, F-16 flight simulator

07.07.2023, 10:58
Czech Republic gives Ukraine attack helicopters, F-16 flight simulator - Photo

The Czech Republic will donate attack helicopters and ammunition to Ukraine’s Air Force, as well as join the F-16 fighter jet training programme and provide Kyiv with a flight simulator, Czech prime minister Petr Fiala told a briefing on Friday.

"Today, I confirmed to Mr President [Volodymyr Zelenskyy] that the Czech Republic is donating attack helicopters, and, in the coming months, another 100,000 rounds of ammunition for large-calibre weapons," Mr Fiala said.

The Czech Air Force has Mi-24B and Mi-35 attack helicopters, multi-purpose Mi-171Sh, Mi-17, Mi-8, and Mi-2 and PZL W-3 Sokół units.

Prague has already handed over 12 Mi-24Ds to Ukraine.

Mr Zelenskyy’s unannounced visit to the Czech Republic follows his trip to Bulgaria, an unlikely ally in the war against Russia that has provided critical Soviet-made ammunition in the early months of the Russian attack.

Since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine last February, Czechia has provided Kyiv with up to 700 pieces of armoured equipment and more than four million rounds of ammunition, Mr Fiala said.

He added the Czech Republic will help train Ukrainians for F-16s and provide Ukraine with a flight simulator for pilot training.

Ukraine, which has long been pushing for modern fighter jets, has indicated it needs four squadrons, that is 48 F-16s, to effectively deter Russian aggression.

It is believed Romania will serve as a ground for training Ukrainian pilots for the jets, with Kyiv expecting first F-16s to arrive early next year.

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