40 Mirage 2000-9 fighter jets for Ukraine – Intelligence Online
PARIS, FRANCE — According to the French online portal Intelligence Online [IO], Ukraine hopes to receive at least 40 Mirage 2000-9 fighters. The IO’s own investigation leads to possible suppliers, among which the names of the United Arab Emirates [UAE], Indonesia, and Greece stand out.
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“After a long negotiation process that has burdened arms brokers working for Kyiv for several weeks, Ukraine hopes to receive around forty Mirage jets. Intelligence Online investigates the origin of these devices,” say IO editors. The first tranche will most likely be fulfilled by the UAE, the French publication also says.
Claims and statements
Just a few days ago, BulgarianMilitary.com reported that Ukrainian pilots are being trained to operate the French Dassault Mirage 2000 fighter jets. According to our sources, the training has already been taking place for a month and a half. Our information also refers to a source in the renowned French publication Le Figaro, which published the same information. According to Le Figaro, training takes place at Mont de Marsan and Nancy air bases.
However, sources claim that the decision to train the Ukrainian pilots was made shortly before the official visit of Ukrainian President Mr. Volodymyr Zelensky to France on February 8.
A day later, official Paris was quick to deny the news that Ukrainian pilots were being trained to fly the Mirage 2000. The Ministry of Defense of Ukraine did the same. The Ministry of Defense of France, through General Jan Gravet, Deputy Minister of Defense Information and Communications, said that “we do not teach Ukrainian pilots either piloting or the use of weapons systems.”
‘It’s not a taboo’ issue
Despite dozens of comments by other European countries regarding a possible F-16 delivery, only France expressed a firm opinion on the matter, stating that the delivery of French fighters to Ukraine is not a taboo issue.
But before any deliveries are undertaken, France’s defense ministry will have to consider three main criteria. They are the usefulness and effectiveness of the weapons for the armed forces of Ukraine, the lack of risk of escalation, and the weakening of the defense capability of the French army.
BulgarianMilitary.com has information that already at the beginning of 2023, French President Mr. Emmanuel Macron ordered the Ministry of Defense of France to issue an assessment regarding the possible provision of fighter jets to Ukraine. Official Paris confirmed that Kyiv sent a request for the delivery of combat aircraft.
About Mirage 2000
The Mirage 2000 is quite outdated technology. The plane made its first flight in 1978 and until now about 600 units have been produced. It would be hard to match the capabilities of the F-16 or the other French Rafale fighter. Its production was stopped in 2007. The chances of the Mirage 2000 ending up in Ukraine are high. Especially because the west mostly supplies outdated retired equipment, and sometimes something more modern.
Otherwise, the fighter is powered by a single SNECMA M53-P2 afterburning turbofan engine, 64.3 kN [14,500 lbf] thrust dry, 95.1 kN [21,400 lbf] with afterburner. Can carry max. takeoff weight of 17,000 kg [37,479 lb]. The maximum flying speed that the aircraft can reach is 2,336 km/h [1,452 mph, 1,261 kn] / Mach 2.2 at high altitude and 1,110 km/h [690 mph; 600 kn] at sea level.
It is armed with two 30 mm [1.2 in] DEFA 554 revolver cannons, 125 rounds per gun. There are a total of nine hard points that can support a weight of 6,300 kg. It can fire air-to-air and air-to-ground missiles, but not anti-radiation missiles. It can also drop unguided and guided bombs.
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