Ukraine: Smoke rises from Russian border post in Kozinka
More than 2,000 flights took off in Russia with aircraft with expired parts since the beginning of the invasion of Ukraine. Inspections by the Transportation Ministry’s agency, Rostransnadzor, found that more than 95 million passengers flew on potentially faulty Russian aircraft.
In tapes accessed and published by the publication Kommersant, Viktor Basargin, the head of Rostransnadzor was heard saying to Russian lawmakers: “We have recorded many instances of aviation equipment being operated with violations that directly affect flight safety.
“Some specific products are simply impossible to bring in.
“For instance, they have been allowed to operate with expired components. More than 2,000 of these flights have been recorded.”
In addition, Russia’s flagship airline Aeroflot found that its personnel was told not to record in-flight malfunctions unless told otherwise by the captain.
Roman Gusarov, head of the Russian website Aviation Explorer, said “extensive engine repairs” had not been done for over a year.
He told El Pas: “There are some types of maintenance that are not carried out in Russia. For example, extensive engine repairs.”
Replacement parts are hard to get because of tough Western sanctions on Russia since the beginning of the war.
It comes as The European Union’s foreign policy chief said Tuesday that the US green light to allow Ukrainian pilots to get training to fly F-16s has created an inexorable momentum that will inevitably bring the fighter jets to the Ukrainian battlefield.
“You know, it’s always the same thing: we discuss, at the beginning everybody is reluctant,” said Josep Borrell, giving the example of the long debate and initial opposition to the dispatch of advanced Leopard battle tanks to Ukraine.
READ MORE: Anti-Russia rebels claim to have ‘completely liberated Kozinka’ in border raid
“And at the end — with the Leopards, with the F-16 at the end — the decision comes to provide this military support because it is absolutely needed.”
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg confirmed that the training decision was the exact thrust necessary toward making the jets available to Ukraine.
“Announcing clearly that they will start training — this is an important step that partly will enable us to deliver fighter jets at some stage,” Stoltenberg said before meeting with EU defence ministers. He said it also proved that the West wouldn’t stand down in the face of Russia, saying such a decision “is sending a very clear signal that we are there for the long term and that Russia can not wait us out.”
Borrell added that training for Ukrainian pilots had already begun in Poland and some other countries, though authorities in Warsaw couldn’t immediately confirm the news. The Netherlands and Denmark, among others, are also making plans for such training.
President Biden falsely told US Marines his son Beau died ‘in Iraq'[VIDEO]
Ukrainian PATRIOT missiles may have downed jets over Russia[INSIGHT]
Family of four die after aircraft crashed into crocodile-infested river[ANALYSIS]
No decision on actually delivering fourth-generation fighter jets has been taken yet, but training pilots now — a process that takes several months — will help speed up battle readiness once a formal decision is made.
Ukraine has long begged for the sophisticated fighter to give it a combat edge as it battles Russia’s invasion, now in its second year. And this new plan opens the door for several nations to supply the aircraft and for the US to help train the pilots.
With the decision, the Biden administration has made a sharp reversal after refusing to approve any transfer of the aircraft or conduct training for more than a year because of worries that it could escalate tensions with Russia. US officials also have argued against the F-16 by saying that learning to fly and logistically support such an advanced aircraft would be difficult and take months.
Source: Read Full Article