Aerial WarfareMilitary Videos

Croatian Air Force Receives First Six Dassault Rafale Fighter Jets

88
×

Croatian Air Force Receives First Six Dassault Rafale Fighter Jets

Share this article
Croatian Air Force Receives First Six Dassault Rafale Fighter Jets
Croatian Air Force Receives First Six Dassault Rafale Fighter Jets

On April 25, 2024, a welcome ceremony took place at the “Colonel Marko Živkovi?” barracks in Velika Gorica as the Croatian Air Force received the first six of a total of 12 Dassault Rafale multi-purpose fighter jets that will operate in the 191st Fighter Squadron of the 91st Wing. Croatian Air Force pilots flew the Rafale planes – four single-seaters and two two-seaters – in from the France, where the training and education of Croatia’s air and ground crews takes place. The Rafale fighter jets will eventually take over Air Policing in the Croatian skies. The protection of the Croatian airspace is integrated into NATO arrangements and overseen by Allied Air Command in Ramstein, Germany, and the Alliance’s southern Combined Air Operations Centre at Torrejon, Spain.

“This is a historic day for Croatia! The first six Rafale multi-purpose fighter planes guard the Croatian skies from today. The security of our country has been raised to a level it has never been before. We are proud to realize the largest investment in the capabilities of the Croatian Army. In the Rafale planes, we are gaining the power of deterrence, we are strengthening our strategic partnership with France, we have joined the Dassault family, which significantly changes our role in NATO and the EU,” said the Prime Minister of the Republic of Croatia, Andrej Plenkovi?.

“I congratulate everyone who participated in the procurement, which represents the largest investment of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Croatia since independence of our country,” said the President of the Croatian Parliament, Gordan Jandrokovi? acknowledging the gain in airspace security for the population.

The first six Rafale fighter jets arrived in Croatia after final preparations, air and ground crew training took place in France.
The first six Dassault Rafale fighter jets arrived in Croatia after final preparations, air and ground crew training took place in France. (Photo by Croatian Ministry of Defence)

Croatia received a proposal for 12 used Rafales F3Rs in September 2020 as part of a bid to replace the Croatian Air Force’s MiG-21s. The total package offered costs €1 billion (including weapon systems, spare parts, logistics and training), and competed with new F-16V Block 70, Israeli used F-16C/D Barak raised to ACE configuration, and Saab Gripen. On 28 May 2021, Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovi? announced the purchase of 12 used Rafales F3-R C/B on order, 10x single-seater C F3-R and 2x two-seater Rafale B F3Rs. The contract was signed on 25 November 2021. The first six were scheduled to be delivered by May 2024 (2 Bs, 4 Cs) and the remaining 6 single-seaters in 2025.

The Dassault Rafale is a French twin-engine, canard delta wing, multirole fighter aircraft designed and built by Dassault Aviation. Equipped with a wide range of weapons, the Rafale is intended to perform air supremacy, interdiction, aerial reconnaissance, ground support, in-depth strike, anti-ship strike and nuclear deterrence missions. The Rafale is referred to as an “omnirole” 4.5th generation aircraft by Dassault. Introduced in 2001, the Rafale is being produced for both the French Air Force and for carrier-based operations in the French Navy. The Rafale has been marketed for export to several countries, and was selected for purchase by the Egyptian Air Force, the Indian Air Force, the Indian Navy, the Qatar Air Force, the Hellenic Air Force, the Croatian Air Force, the Indonesian Air Force and the United Arab Emirates Air Force.

The first six Dassault Rafale fighter jets operated by the Croatian Air Force 191st Fighter Squadron they will guard Croatian skies under NATO Air Policing arrangements.
The first six Dassault Rafale fighter jets operated by the Croatian Air Force 191st Fighter Squadron they will guard Croatian skies under NATO Air Policing arrangements. (Photo by Croatian Ministry of Defence)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *