Slovakia picks U.S. fighter planes to replace Russian-made jets

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BRATISLAVA (Reuters) - Slovakia's government agreed it would purchase 14 U.S.-made F-16 fighter jets to replace its ageing Russian-made MiG-29s, the defence ministry said on Wednesday.

Slovakia picked the new F-16s made by Lockheed Martin over Swedish Gripen jets, calling them more modern and more advanced, according to an analysis published on Tuesday before the decision.

Slovakia, a NATO military alliance member, has a maintenance contract with Russia for its 12 MiG-29s until autumn 2019.

(Reporting by Tatiana Jancarikova, editing by Louise Heavens)

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