The on-duty flight of Russian Su-27 fighter jets will land at the aerodrome in Baranavichy in the coming days.
According to BelaPAN, the on-duty flight made of four Russian Su-27 fighter jets plans to arrive to the aerodrome of the 61st fighter jet aviation base in Baranavichy (Brest region) in the coming days. Together with the fighter jets technical staff will also relocate from Russia to Baranavichy. When exactly this will happen depends among other on the weather.
We would remind that on 23 April this year Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu during his visit to Minsk told of Russia’s plans to deploy a fighter jets regiment in the territory of Belarus. He then claimed that already this year an aviation commandant’s office was planned to be created in Belarus and the first on-duty flight of fighter jets delivered.
On 26 June the Commander in Chief of Russia’s Air Forces lieutentn general Viktor Bondarev reported that the Russian aviation base would be deployed in Lida (Hrodna region) and would start functioning as early as in 2013. Modified Su-27SM3 fighter jets would be stationed there.
Later the information came out on stationing at least two on-duty fighter jets in Baranavichy.
“The creation of a Russian aviation base in Belarus is the result of following the inter-governmental agreement on strengthening the military component of the union state”. As a participant of the union state Russia is obliged to deploy its aviation base there”, - Bondarev claimed. He also said that at the early stage the base would be Russian, and later it would be decided. It will be the Belarusian party that will equip the base, while Russian will help. “The aviation base will become an important element of the first strategic defense echelon of the Union State, providing for covering Belarus’ air space”, - Bondarev emphasized.
At a meeting on the issues of forming and developing Belarus’ armed forces on 20 August Lukashenka ordered to start the practical implementation of the agreements with Russia on aviation and air defense. “I am tasking the Defense Ministry with starting to practically implement the agreements reaches with the Russian Federation on aviation and air defense systems”, - he said.
On 29 October the head of Russia’s Defense Ministry Sergei Shoigu said in Moscow that the preparation of the agreement on deploying a Russian aviation base in the territory of Belarus was in its final stages. “The parties are finalizing the preparation of an inter-governmental agreement on the deployment of a Russian aviation base in the territory of Belarus, - he said. – We have considered the outcomes of work of the working group of Belarus and Russia’s Air Forces on choosing an aerodrome for the base”.
Initially, according to Shoigu, it is planned to base an on-duty flight of Russia Air Forces’ fighter jets. “We have started with the practical implementation of the issue of the deployment of an on-duty flight of Russia’s pursuit aviation in the territory of Belarus, - the minister said. – The necessary documents are being prepared”.
It should be noted that the plans to deploy a Russian aviation base in Belarus caused a negative response among the opposition and a part of Belarusian society.