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Croatia to buy 12 French Rafale fighters for $1.2 billion

Christian Fernsby |
Croatia announced Friday that it will purchase 12 used Rafale fighter jets from France for nearly 1 billion euros ($1.2 billion).

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Topics: CROATIA    FRENCH   

The purchase will be worth 999 million euros and will involve 10 single-seater and two 2-seater F3R Rafale twin-engine aircraft.

The package will include the aircraft, crew training and some weapons, according to Croatian media. The first six Rafales will be delivered in 2024, with the rest due the following year.

The French Defense Ministry said in a statement that Croatia’s choice “will considerably strengthen the strategic partnership between France and Croatia.”

“This is the second time that a European country has chosen the Rafale and the 5th country in total" after Qatar, Egypt, India and Greece, the statement said.

“The choice of Croatia is a choice of sovereignty, resolutely European,” French Defense Minister Florence Parly said.

“The fact that a European country chooses the offer of another European country is a strong sign that goes beyond the symbol,” Parly said. “We are building, brick by brick, the fundamentals of a European strategic culture.”

Rafale manufacturer Dassault Aviation said it was “delighted'' with Croatia's choice.

“This latest success in a competition between European and US aircraft confirms the technological superiority of the Rafale, latest-generation, combat-proven multirole fighter," the company said in a statement.

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Highlights: June 1 - June 5, 2015