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Iraq receives Russian fighter

Sun, 29.06.2014 10:42



Kiev/Ukraine in Arabic/Iraq says it has received the first batch of fighter jets it ordered from Russia to help it as it fights an offensive by Sunni rebels.

The defence ministry said five Sukhoi Su-25 attack aircraft would enter service in "three to four days".

The insurgents control large swathes of the north and west after a string of attacks over the past three weeks.

On Saturday, the government said it had retaken the northern city of Tikrit, but rebels dispute this.
State television said 60 militants had been killed and that preparations were now being made to move north towards rebel-held Mosul.

The rebels confirmed there had been heavy fighting in the city they took on 11 June, but implied the attack had failed, saying they were pursuing what was left of the army offensive.
Iraq's ministry of defence said the deal with Russia "was aimed at increasing the firepower of the air force and the rest of the armed forces in order to fight terrorism".

Iraq's prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, told the BBC last week that his government had signed a deal with Russia and Belarus to supply jet fighters. The deals are reportedly worth up to $500m (£293m).

A Russian expert, quoted by Lenta.ru news agency, said that six Sukhoi SU-30 jets had been sent to Iraq, but this has not yet been confirmed.
Iraq's ministry of defence said the deal with Russia "was aimed at increasing the firepower of the air force and the rest of the armed forces in order to fight terrorism".

Iraq's prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, told the BBC last week that his government had signed a deal with Russia and Belarus to supply jet fighters. The deals are reportedly worth up to $500m (£293m).

A Russian expert, quoted by Lenta.ru news agency, said that six Sukhoi SU-30 jets had been sent to Iraq, but this has not yet been confirmed.

bbc

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