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Italy will buy fewer F-35 fighter jets than initially planned, the country's defense minister said Wednesday, La Repubblica reports on its website.
Italy had planned to order 131 of the joint strike fighters, but will now purchase 90, Defense Minister Giampaolo Di Paola told the joint parliamentary defense committees, the paper reports.
He also outlined a plan to "improve operational efficacy" by cutting Italy's armed forces by 43,000, or almost a quarter, over the next five or six years.
The U.K. has also signaled it may downsize its order of the F-35 plane made by Lockheed Martin Corp. (LMT).
-Rome Bureau, Dow Jones Newswires; +39 06 6976 6920