The Israeli Air Force’s chief of staff has recommended the purchase of an additional 17 F-35 Joint Strike Fighter aircraft, but that decision is pending authorization from the Israeli government.

Wednesday marked the roll-out of the first Lockheed Martin F-35I Adir, a slightly modified F-35A which will be delivered to Israel’s Nevatim Air Base in December. The U.S. has approved the sale of up to 75 F-35s to Israel and the country has signed contracts for 33 F-35s, the last of which will arrive around 2021, Israeli air force chief of staff Brigadier Gen. Tal Kelman told reporters Tuesday.

Israel has not made a decision on whether it will purchase the additional 17 F-35A-model fighters or when they would be delivered, Kelman says. […]