Russia: February 13, 2000


Russia has sent the first three of what will be 22 Su-24 strike bombers to Gvardeyskoye, in the Crimea. Under the deal that allows Russia to base warships at Crimean bases, the Russians can keep 22 combat aircraft in Crimea. They recently withdrew the 22 old Su-17s based there. The Ukrainians delayed the arrival of the Russian planes for two years over concerns that they might be nuclear armed, and inspected the Su-24s upon arrival to be sure that the "nuclear weapons related equipment" had been removed.--Stephen V Cole


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