By Boyko Nikolov*
DAMASCUS, (BM) – Six MiG-29 fighters of unknown affiliation at the Russian Khmeimim airbase in Syria, BulgarianMilitary.com has learned. The information comes from Russian media, which refers to recent satellite images of the region in Syria.
The photos show them lined up in a row of six fighters. According to the shape and size, Russian military experts claim that these are MiG-29 fighters. Our source from the Russian Ministry of Defense did not confirm but did not deny the information. Russia and its aerospace forces do not use MiG-29 fighters for their operations in Syria.
These may be fighters intended for the Syrian Arab Army. The problem is that only two of the six fighters are the colors of the Syrian army. So far, Syria has also not confirmed ownership of the two fighter jets painted in its colors. The other four fighters are gray colored. military analysts say that the Russian-backed forces may have used these four fighters in military operations in Libya months ago.
Officially, the Russian military was not present during the hostilities in Libya. Unofficially, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s private army, Wagner, has been involved for several months in supporting the Libyan National Army, led by Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar. In the middle of last year, we posted a video of a “Russian” MiG-29 crashing in the skies over Libya and a Russian-speaking pilot’s ejection.
Most likely, two of the fighters are for Bashar al-Assad
Russia’s Aviapro news agency reported on January 4th that the Syrian Arab Army had received additional new Russian MiG-29 fighters. However, Russian journalists do not know what the update of the Syrian army is about. In recent months, we remind you that Syria has received a significant amount of Russian MiG-29 fighters and two Su-24 strategic bombers.
Last year, we announced that Bashar al-Assad’s army had received six upgraded MiG-29s (May). In June of that year, Russia delivered the second batch of upgraded Syrian MiG-29 fighters. Some of them later took part in hostilities against the Turkish army and pro-Turkish soldiers throughout the country. That same year, the Syrian military lost one of its fighters near a military base in Poms. The pilot died. According to Russian journalists, the Syrian army expects to receive attacking Russian helicopters.