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Poland considers transferring additional MiG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine

Poland is contemplating giving Ukraine another batch of MiG-29s, at least 14 aircraft. Immediate transfer is impossible because they are used in NATO patrols.
poland considers transferring additional mig-29 fighter jets ukraine polish air force jet 2021 illustrative us force/edgar grimaldo
A Polish air force MiG-29 fighter jet in 2021. Illustrative photo: US Air Force/Edgar Grimaldo.
Poland considers transferring additional MiG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine

Poland will consider providing Ukraine with at least one additional squadron of MiG-29 fighter jets, comprising a minimum of 14 aircraft. This possibility was discussed during the signing of a security guarantee agreement between Ukraine and Poland, as reported on the Ukrainian President’s website.

Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk explained that an immediate transfer is not possible, as these aircraft are currently participating in NATO air patrol programs, according to Militarnyi.

This consideration builds upon Poland’s previous support, having transferred 14 of its MiG-29 fighters to Ukrainian Defense Forces last year.

As Ukraine anticipates the initial delivery of F-16s from its allies, the Soviet-era MiG-29 Fulcrum continues to be the primary fighter jet operated by the Ukrainian Air Force.

The 2023 transfer required approval from Germany, as 23 of Poland’s MiG-29 fighters were originally purchased from Germany in 2002. These aircraft were inherited by the Bundeswehr from the German Democratic Republic’s army. One MiG-29 remains in Germany as an exhibit at the aviation museum at Gatow airfield in West Berlin.

As of 2024, the Polish army still has 14 MiG-29 fighters in service, including 11 MiG-29A and 3 MiG-29UB versions. However, these Soviet-era aircraft no longer meet Poland’s modern needs, with F-16 fighters currently protecting the country’s airspace.

Poland is set to modernize its air force further, with plans to receive modern American F-35 fighters starting in 2026. In 2020, the country signed a contract for 32 F-35 Lightning II aircraft.

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