Iraqi F-16 aircraft whose delivery was delayed earlier this year by security concerns will sent to Tucson, Arizona, beginning in December so Iraqi pilots training there can start to use them instead of trainer aircraft, the Pentagon said on Monday.

The first three F-16 jet fighters will be delivered in December, with an additional plane being sent there each month thereafter, the Pentagon said. Baghdad has ordered 36 of the $65 million Lockheed Martin planes, but initial deliveries to Balad air base in Iraq were delayed because of security concerns.