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29th August 2012

Serbian air force's dress rehearsal for "Batajnica 2012" air show


Defence Minister Aleksandar Vucic and deputy CHOD Major General Milan Bjelica both attended today the dress rehearsal of the Serbian military aviation for the upcoming air show at Batajnica airport.

On this occasion, Minister Vucic said that the pilots are ready to show their knowledge and skills while obeying top security measures.

By celebrating 100 years of Serbian aviation we want to show that the knowledge of our people, and even the equipment is not inferior to the greatest powers in the world, and I would say that all the pilots are not only willing, but eager to show their skills and knowledge - Minister Vucic said. He took the opportunity to invite all aviation fans to come to Batajnica on Sunday, announcing that this would be the largest air show in the last 25 years.

According to the Air Force commander Major General Ranko Zivak the dress rehearsal featured a parade of military aircraft and practicing solo performances.

11 countries will take part in the air show, which is very important for the upcoming event and celebration of our anniversary. In addition, five other countries will be participating in the delegation level, making a total of 16 countries, with 27 aircrafts and more than 200 people who will be part of the air show - said General Zivak noting that on this occasion our air force will deploy 45 aircrafts.

Air Force commander said that on Sunday, when it comes to national aviation organizations, some 27 associations will present themselves with 28 aircrafts, thus visitors will be able to see some 130 air crafts in all.

Danish Ambassador to Serbia Mette Kjuel Nielsen expressed her pleasure with her country participating in the air show which has once again confirmed the successful cooperation between Serbian and Danish Air Force.

- Our countries may be small, and I am very glad that we were able to establish good cooperation, and to see the benefits of what we do. We have always been met with a the positive response from the Serbian side in cooperation with Denmark, said the ambassador adding she was pleased she would attend the air show Batajnica.



When asked what the condition of the Serbian Air Force and its prospects, Minister Vucic announced the construction of an important infrastructure facility for the Serbian air force.

ASAF air crafts will have better treatment in line with our economic situation, though this is not easy at all.

Vucic said that the pride of Serbian industry is Lasta training plane, a plane that Serbia plans promote at the international market and to improve the production of such aircrafts in Pancevo-based factory "Utva".

Responding to a question about the factory, which, as previously announced, will be built in central Serbia, Minister Vucic said to be built using funds from "Serbian capital" and it will produce complex combat means for which customers have already been found.

As regards general state of our air force, general Zivak recalled repairs and partial modernization of MiG 29s that are in current use, and will be usable for the next 8 to 10 years. He also pointed out that during plans for phasing our and replacing miG 21 which are becoming obsolete were under way.