"Sukhoi" fighter aircrafts delivered, tanks on hold

Su-25 fighter aircrafts and Mi-17 helicopters were dismantled at a hitherto unknown location in Eastern Europe and delivered to the Ukrainian armed forces.

Izvor: RTS

Friday, 27.05.2022.

08:55

EPA/EFE/SERGEI ILNITSKY

"Sukhoi" fighter aircrafts delivered, tanks on hold

In total, the authorities in Kyiv will receive 14 "Sukhoi" fighter aircrafts and at least six helicopters. Ukraine's air force has received reinforcements at the same time as the controversy over the delivery of tanks produced in the west. Israel "stopped" a shipment of German anti-tank missiles.

With diplomatic maneuvering and with the help of other diplomatic means, several countries of the former Warsaw Pact have prepared a new package of military aid to Ukraine, which includes 14 "Sukhoi" fighter aircrats and at least six helicopters, according to Ukrainian and Western sources.

For now, however, it has not been revealed from which countries these planes originate, because the Ukrainians attributed this donation to "Eastern European partners". Planes and helicopters are being dismantled and on their way to Ukraine, reports the U.S. Foreign Affairs.

The delivery of "Sukhoi" followed only a few days after unofficial information appeared that Poland was ready to cede one of its airports, where about 70 "Mig-29" and "Su-25" would be dismantled and then transferred to Ukraine. Theoretically, it is about 30 aircraft from the Bulgarian Air Force, and a total of 40 Polish and Slovak "MiGs". It is also not known where the planes and helicopters were dismantled, but military analysts believe that the

Rzeszów–Jasionka Airport is the only location where this could have happened. By mid-May, more than 550, mostly American, transport planes had landed at the airport, which is only 80 kilometers from the Ukrainian border and 100 kilometers from the Yavoriv military base, the nearest base of the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

According to statistics published by the U.S. Air Force, those planes delivered 90 155-millimeter howitzers, about 8.500 small arms, 50 million pieces of ammunition, more than 180.000 grenades, almost 10.000 anti-tank missiles and 15.000 tons of various military equipment.

Although it is not known which countries donated "Sukhoi" fighters, all eyes are on Poland and Slovakia, which have previously expressed readiness to give the remaining aircraft of this type to Ukraine.

Bulgaria is also mentioned, whose eight of the 14 "Sukhoi" fighter aircrafts, after strong bureaucratic and all sorts of other vicissitudes, were modernized in Belarus until February last year.

In that way, the longevity of Bulgarian aircraft was extended by another 800 hours of flight, and the aircraft was equipped with advanced navigation and communication equipment, a "head-up" display, and devices that enable the use of new weapons. Airplanes of serial numbers "240", "246", "249", "252", "253" and "254", as well as two-seater "002" and "095" were modernized.

Bulgarian sources, on the other hand, claim that the planes from this country did not "fly" to Ukraine, because Prime Minister Kiril Petkov warned on several occasions that Sofia is not in a position to provide military assistance to Kyiv before the parliament makes an appropriate decision.

Earlier, Poland ceded to Kyiv all the remaining spare parts for "MiG-29", while a number of sources state that on that occasion, several whole planes were delivered to the Ukrainians, which, as now "Sukhoi", were previously dismantled.

Tanks on hold, Israel does not want to interfere

The delivery of "Sukhoi" fighter aircrafts coincided with the rather controversial claims from Berlin, whose officials claim that there is an "informal" agreement within NATO not to supply Western-made tanks to Ukraine, as Russia could see this as a provocation. According to Deutsche Welle, all NATO members adhere to that alleged agreement.

The only NATO member country that has delivered tanks to the Ukrainians so far is Poland, whose 236 more or less modernized T-72s with the agreement from a month ago are already largely at the disposal of the Ukrainian army. With the complicated agreement, which was formulated at the time, Kyiv was supposed to win, and the company "Reinmetal" was ready to deliver 88 older models of the "Leopard 1" tank, and a dozen armored fighting vehicles "Gepard" (better known as "Cheetahs"), anti-aircraft weapons based on the first model of the "Leopard" tank.

The "Cheetahs" are armed with a pair of 35 mm caliber AirLicon cannons and Stinger anti-aircraft missiles. Since the sixties of the last century, when they were created, "Cheetahs" have been modernized on several occasions. They were withdrawn from the Bundeswehr in 2010.

Since the outbreak of the war in Ukraine, Germany has sent about 9.000 anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles, 16 million pieces of ammunition and about 2.000 mines to the front, some of which fell into the hands of Russian forces near Kharkiv.

Berlin's intention to deliver "Spike" anti-tank guided missiles to the Ukrainians as well, since Israel rejected the American request to transfer those missiles from Germany to the government in Kyiv.

"Spike" anti-tank guided missile is produced under license in Germany, and the media in Tel Aviv state that the delivery has been stopped because Israel does not want to interfere in this conflict.

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