Russian oil company offers big reward for first Ukrainian F-16 shot down

Reward first Ukrainian F16 downed
Danish F-16 aircraft releases countermeasure flares.

Russian oil company Ural Fores has offered a large reward for the first F-16 jet shot down in Ukraine, company director Sergey Shmotyev told TASS. Ural Fores will pay 15 million rubles ($167,700) for the first downed F-16 fighter and 500,000 rubles ($5,591) for each subsequent aircraft.

Shmotyev said they had previously offered a reward for the destruction of Western tanks of 5 million rubles ($55,910) for the first and 500,000 rubles ($5,591) for each of the subsequent ones.

Ukraine will receive a total of 85 second-hand F-16 fighter jets which were donated by the Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark and Norway. Most of these belong to the F-16AM/BM Block 15 version. The first aircraft are expected to be delivered in the second half of this year. These aircraft are part of NATO's support package for Kiev, which also includes training for Ukrainian pilots.

Kiev apparently wants to base 2/3 of its F-16s at airports in neighboring nations to prevent them from being hit by Russian fire. Moscow has warned that if the F-16s based outside are used for attack missions against them, they may attack air bases hosting the aircraft. However, it is likely that the F-16s outside the border will act as a back-up for the aircraft that will gradually be lost in combat and will be gradually introduced into Ukrainian bases.

Written by Matteo Sanzani
Image: Royal Danish Air Force

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