Although the Belgian F-16s will be “put on the shelf” by 2029, they will still be upgraded, including with the latest nuclear arms, according to an Internal Defence Document, De Morgen reported on Friday.
The F-16 will be replaced during the next decade by 34 new US Lockheed Martin F-35s. Although the F-16s only have a 10-year life expectancy, the Air Force wants the aircraft to remain at their best to carry out their specific tasks.
One of these tasks is to transport nuclear missiles. Seeing Americans are modernizing their arsenal with B-61 nuclear bombs, the Belgian fighter aircraft must be adapted.
This information is taken from the “F-16 Material Management Plan”, a 2017 Internal Defence Document that is still relevant, according to De Morgen’s source.