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Israeli Air Force Wants 75 Fifth-Generation F-35 Jets From US

Sputnik News

14:17 23.06.2016(updated 14:18 23.06.2016)

The Israeli Air Force (IAF) plans to buy 75 US-manufactured fifth-generation F-35 fighter jets to increase its capabilities in the Middle East, IAF Chief of Staff Brig. Gen. Tal Kalman said.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) – On Wednesday, Kalman along with Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman participated in a rollout celebration of F-35 designed for the IAF.

"We want to reach 75 jets… The Israeli F-35 is the first fifth-generation fighter to arrive in the Middle East, and it will allow us to open a significant gap in our abilities when facing all of the elements in the area," Kalman said, as quoted by the IAF.

Previous agreements between the United States and Israel included the purchase of 33 F-35s, however Israel's Chief of the General Staff Lt. Gen. Gadi Eizenkot approved recommendation to increase the number of F-35s to 50.

The F-35 project is the most ambitious and expensive weapon system in the history of the US Defense Department, with a cost of some $1.5 trillion.


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