Buenos Aires (Agencies): In a significant development, Argentina is poised to acquire US-origin F-16 fighter jets from Denmark, officially sidelining the Chinese-made JF-17 Thunder Block-III aircraft. This decision reflects the intense geopolitical rivalry between the United States and China in South America, where Washington is wary of having Beijing’s military equipment in its vicinity.

Beijing, on the other hand, has been actively promoting its defense aerospace technology by securing military sales to developing and Global South countries, positioning itself as an alternative to Western weaponry. The announcement was made by a Platform X user named Milei Shelby, a post that even caught the attention of the Argentine President himself.

While Argentina’s defense ministry officials have not provided additional details, La Nacion reports that they did not deny the news. The US had previously authorized the sale of 24 F-16 fighter planes equipped with air-to-air missiles from Denmark to Argentina, with a financing package of $40 million to facilitate the purchase. This move has significant geopolitical implications, as it directly competes with China’s offer of JF-17 aircraft from Pakistan.

Javier Milei, Argentina’s new President, had expressed his intention to acquire the American fighters back in November 2023. His election raised concerns about potential strains in relations between Buenos Aires and Beijing. Additionally, Javier Milei’s chief foreign affairs adviser, Diana Mondino, announced a shift in Argentina’s stance regarding the association of leading emerging markets (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa). Buenos Aires now refrains from joining the bloc, citing perceived lack of benefits, but remains open to reconsideration if advantages emerge.

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