The issue of F-16 fighters has been discussed since August 12-13, when the joint Turkish Azerbaijani military exercises came to an end, but the fighters were not flown back and remained stationed in Azerbaijan’s airports, official representative of the Ministry of Defense Artsrun Hovhannisyan told a briefing today.
In this regard, he said the Armenian Ministry of Defense has raised the issue with relevant bodies.
As for Azerbaijan’s attempts to reject the fact of shutdown by releasing a ridiculous statement, saying that there are no F-16 jets at the disposal of their air force, Hovhannisyan said “we are well informed what types of fighters they possess. And we know very well that fighters at their disposal are incapable of properly carrying out the tasks set, that’s is the reason why the F-16 jets are there.”
“We know they had long been working with the jets during the military exercises. The Republic of Armenia possesses relevant information, including that from radio-technical intelligence means. Therefore, surprises await all those who try to deny or not take our official information seriously. Radio-technical intelligence data will also come to prove this,” Artsrun Hovhannisyan stated.
“F-16 jets had been brought and had been working for days, carrying out reconnaissance flights and combat tasks. Why had they been brought? Because the Azerbaijani air force was unable to meet the task. They lack the skills, technical means and experience. Secondly, other equipment from the Turkish air force was also transported to Azerbaijan, e.g. Bayraktar and other UAVs, which are incompatible with Mig-29 or SU-25, and could not be used from the perspective of management of the operative situation,” he said.
Therefore, he added, the F-16 was necessary to coordinate the situation, “We are well aware and have the experience to understand that the F-16 jets are in the air, they are working, supporting the Bayraktar. In parallel, from the other side of the border a Turkish radio technical communication aircraft is flying. And we know how they are coordinating the actions. We know very well that only an F-16 could at the time, being at a distance of 60 km, spot the SU-25 from a relevant altitude, because the pilots of SU-25 had enough experience, they knew how to act tactically, no air defense system could locate them at that time and in that place,” Hovhannisyan stated.
“Only the F-16 could spot it because it was at the altitude of 6-8 kilometers. And we know that the missiles in their arsenal were able to strike a target up to 90-100 km away, and only they are able to strike. Missiles on Mig-29 would be unable to hit the SU-25 in that location, at that time and under those conditions. We are very well aware of all this. And if there is anyone doubting the facts, if there are international experts willing to examine, we can provide everything,” the Defense Ministry representative stated.