Czech Defence Ministry Announces Transfer of Additional Mi-24 Helicopters to Ukraine
The Defence Minister of the Czech Republic, Jana Cernochova, has stated that Soviet-made Mi-24 helicopters, which the country is replacing with American helicopters, could find utility in Ukraine.
This was reported by ČTK.
Cernochova emphasized that in the future, the country cannot be "materially dependent on risky resources from the East," making it crucial to both update military equipment and create opportunities for its maintenance.
Simultaneously, she acknowledged the service history of Russian Mi-24V and Mi-35 helicopters, which "served longer than expected."
"While today we symbolically bid farewell to them, their story, undoubtedly, is not over. I believe we all suspect that today they could still find application where there is a need for any defensive equipment. For months now, and in the future, our assistance will head precisely there," Cernochova added.
The Czech Defence Minister noted that the Mi helicopters are in good condition and have been fulfilling tasks for the military for a long time, including in international operations.
The Czech army possesses around 40 helicopters, of which 30 are Soviet and Russian-made Mi series. It also has several Mi-8 and Mi-17 helicopters, which will be in operation for a few more years. Moreover, the army has 15 upgraded Mi-171Sh helicopters, which can be used until 2035. In addition, the Czech Air Force has 38 Polish helicopters, including PZL Mi-2 and PZL W-3 Sokół.
In 2019, the Czech Republic reached an agreement with the United States to purchase 8 multipurpose UH-1Y Venom and four combat AH-1Z Viper helicopters. The Czech side has already received the first four new helicopters.
Recalling that on July 7th, Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala stated that the Czech Republic would provide additional attack helicopters, large-caliber ammunition, and aid in training F-16 fighter pilots to Ukraine.
"I confirmed to President Zelensky that the Czech Republic will provide attack helicopters, as well as within the next few months, 100,000 rounds of ammunition for large-caliber weapons," Fiala said.
Furthermore, the Czech Republic will provide Ukraine with a flight simulator, allowing Ukrainian aviators to undergo specialized training.
As reported by The Gaze, the lower chamber of the Czech Parliament completed the process of approving a defense cooperation agreement with the United States, which will come into effect after being signed by President Petr Pavel.
Czech Defence Minister Jana Cernochova stated that the defense agreement with the U.S. provides Prague with additional security assurances, particularly crucial due to the ongoing security situation stemming from Russian military aggression against Ukraine.