Slovakia Prepares to Transfer MiG-29 Warplanes to Ukraine

NATO providing Ukraine with warplanes will be a significant escalation in aid

Slovakia’s foreign minister said Tuesday that the country is preparing to send its Soviet-era MiG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine, which would mark the first known transfer of warplanes to Kyiv from a NATO member.

“We have not yet handed [Ukraine] the MiG-29s. But we are ready to do it. We are talking with our NATO partners about how to do it,” said Slovakia’s Foreign and European Affairs Minister Ratislav Káčer.

Káčer added that Slovakia had a conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky about the potential transfer and that he expects a visit from a Ukrainian delegation. “I think that, in the coming weeks, a Ukrainian delegation will come to Slovakia, and we will work together with our American friends to make this reality,” he said.

Slovakia says it has 11 MiG-29s, although it’s not clear if they will send all of them to Ukraine. Earlier in the war, Poland offered to send its MiG-29s to Ukraine but wanted the US to transfer them through Germany. The Pentagon backed off on the Polish plan, likely over the fear of escalation with Russia.

Zelensky and other Ukrainian officials have been pleading with the West to send more advanced modern aircraft, but the US has yet to oblige. Ukraine is seeking F-16s, which would take months to train Ukrainian pilots how to fly, and Moscow would view such support as a significant escalation of the US role in the war.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.