Hungary should soon join the protection of the Slovak Republic’s airspace. The Slovak Ministry of Defense (MoD) expects the agreement to be signed in the coming weeks. Cooperation between the countries in the field of Slovak airspace protection will also be the subject of the June meeting of V4 defense ministers. Martina Kakaščíková, spokeswoman for the ministry, told the Slovak news agency TASR.
“The Ministry of Defense of the Slovak Republic is already working to ensure the protection of Slovak airspace in 2024 in cooperation with the Czech Republic, Poland and also Hungary, which has declared its readiness to participate in the current initiative for the protection of Slovak airspace. A political agreement is already in place and will be signed soon,” the spokesperson announced.
She also reminded that Slovakia has a long-standing agreement on cooperation in the field of military aviation with all Visegrad-4 partners. “On the basis of these framework agreements, the Slovak MoD has concluded implementing agreements with the Czech Republic and Poland, which determine the rules and standard operational processes for the protection of Slovak airspace by the partners’ aircraft,” the spokeswoman added. The Hungarian Ministry of Defense has not confirmed the news yet.
Slovakia has recently ordered new 4+ generation fighter jets from the United States. “According to the current agreement, the first four F-16 Block 70 aircraft should be delivered to Slovakia during 2024,” Kakaščíková added.
Former Slovak Air Force MIG-29. Photo: Wikipedia
Slovakia has in February transferred its cold war era fleet of Mig-29 fighter jets to Ukraine free of charge. The thirteen aircraft were in a different state of disrepair, only three of them were able to fly to the East on their own. However, the decision, attacked by opposition parties as unconstitutional, has left the Eastern European nation without an air force of its own. Although the first new F-16 aircraft are expected to be delivered at the end of next year, it will take at least another year for them to be fully integrated into the Slovakian Air Force.
Featured Photo: Facebook Zoltán Balogh