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Pakistan acquiring F-16s from Jordan

February 19, 2014 (by Asif Shamim) - Pakistani press is reporting that the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) has acquired one squadron of F-16 multi-role fighter aircraft from Jordan with 13 being inducted into the service next month.

PAF F-16A #85726 and F-16B #84608 over the Choolistan desert, armed with AIM-9 Sidewinders - the PAF's main air-to-air weapons [PAF photo]

With the addition of these new airframes (12 A models and one B model aircraft) the PAF will reach 76 F-16s in service. Lockheed Martin and the US government has also given its nod for the sale/purchase of the planes.

Sources available to the 'The News' who published this story indicated the aircraft were in good condition since all had been updated to the Mid-Life Update (MLU) and they would be provide service for another 20 years with almost 3,000 hours on average available to them for flying. However sources declined to indicate how much this deal was worth and said more would be disclosed next month at the time the new jets were inducted into service.

However, it is understood that the used planes are cost-effective and could provide service for a fairly longer period of time. Pakistan is also contemplating to acquire more used planes for the PAF from some other countries while the induction of JF-17 Thunder aircraft, co-production of Pakistan and China, e is also underway simultaneously, the sources said.

Chief of the Air Staff (CAS), Air Chief Marshal Tahir Rafiq Butt, visited Jordan last year pursuing the sale of the aircraft. He and officials from Jordan had discussions about the sale/purchase and delivery deal.

Additional images:

Pakistani F-16A #82702 over the Indus river, near Attock. Note the standard PAF F-16 color scheme. [Photo by Saeed Ahmed Siddique]