United States blocks Israeli F-16 jets sale to Croatia

Block Israeli F-16 sale Croazia
United States blocks Israeli F-16 jets sale to Croazia.

The Israeli government has abandoned its plan to sell second-hand F-16 Baraks to Croatia as the United States has not approved the deal. In 2018, Croatia reached an agreement with Tel Aviv to buy a surplus of 12 Israeli F-16 jets to replace the old MiG-21 fleet. The agreement also included a simulator, spare parts, ground equipment, training, logistics services and a basic weapons suite.

The United States, however, opposed the finalization of the deal between the two nations because Israeli fighters received software updates and are not in the original version as provided by Lockheed Martin.

Last week, the Croatian government asked Tel Aviv to obtain US authorization to sell aircraft in today's configuration.

"Israel was responsible to obtain approval to deliver the aircraft… in the ordered configuration," says the Croatian defence ministry.

Sophisticated electronic and radar systems have been a crucial factor in Zagreb's decision to purchase aircraft from Israel and the Washington bond has made Croatia's interest vanish.

The value of the deal was $500 million (€435 million), but no signature was placed on both sides and no penalties are expected. This failed agreement paves the way for other nations or aerospace industries that can offer their aircraft to Croatia.

👉 You may also like: Trump administration pushes Bulgaria to choose the F-16

Written by Matteo Sanzani
Image: George Karavantos

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