Russia Adds Upgraded Warplanes to Armenian Base

A Mikoyan MiG-29 fighter jet takes off at the Erebuni air base in Gyumri, Armenia

GYUMRI (RFE/RL)—Russia announced on Tuesday the deployment of newly modernized warplanes at its military base in Armenia that has already been reinforced with more sophisticated weaponry in recent years.

The Russian Armed Forces’ Southern Military District said in a statement that “a batch of fourth-generation multipurpose MiG-29 fighter jets” has arrived at a military airport in Yerevan after undergoing “capital repairs.”

The Russian base, which uses the Erebuni airport together with the Armenian Air Force, was known to have 16 MiG-29s until now. The statement did not specify whether the Russian military has increased their number or simply upgraded some of the existing jets. A spokesman for Armenia’s Defense Ministry declined to clarify that, referring all inquiries to the Russians.

That Moscow plans to have more modern military aircraft stationed in Armenia was first announced last October by Colonel Aleksandr Petrov, the commander of the aviation unit of the Russian base. Petrov said that the unit’s jets will have their electronic targeting and navigation systems upgraded.

The Southern Military District, which comprises the base headquartered in Gyumri, has reported in the last few years significant increases in flights carried out by Russian pilots serving in Armenia. A February 20 statement by the district said the number and length of such flights have increased by 15 percent so far this year.

The Russian military also plans to beef up the base with around two dozen combat helicopters later this year. It said in January that they will have “a wide range of tasks in aviation support for troops and transportation of personnel.”

The helicopters are to be deployed at the Erebuni airfield in line with an agreement reached by Russian and Armenian defense officials in April 2013. The Armenian government gave the formal green light to the deployment in November.


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  1. Zareh said:

    The opposition in Armenia is salivating about the events in Ukraine. Do they really expect Armenia to will be going the way Ukraine went against the most powerful Putin. Do they really want a civil war in Armenia. Do they really think the U.S. And NATO will come to our help. Do they want Turkish NATO troops coming in to help the opposition in Armenia. They are out of their mind and lunatic. Armenia’s fate is intimately tied with Russia. Thank God that the ARF realized this fact at the beginning of our third republic and they went to Moscow and made peace with Russia. I give all the credit to the ARF for being farsighted knowing not to antagonize the Russian bear. How can Armenia join NATO and the European Union when they can not force Turkey to open the borders with Armenia. How can Armenia be part of NATO when they do not respect the results of the referendum and independence of Artsakh. Why do they want us to sever our relationship with Iran. How can we join them when Unrepentant Turkey is one of them.
    Let me say clearly. If they can force Turkey to recognize the Genocide And recreate the Wilsonian Armenia, only then we can make peace with Turkey and join NATO. Until then we will have no choice but to be Russia’s partner. It is as simple as that.

    • dvo said:

      dont let western and USA media propaganda fool you, Crimea is Ukrainian Russian problem.

      Russia deploys its aircrafts in Armenia to be secure in case of an invasion from Turkey.
      Russia also deployed war ship in istanbul 2 days ago Because if the west Attacks they will attack from Turkey because Turkey is a rat and Russia is a threat for Turkey.

      Ukraine and Russia re actuly one nation the same.

      Do you know that the USA is getting richer and richer everyday becouse dollars used for international transactions all those countries the USA attacked or planned to attack were trying to create their own payment system.

      USA fairs this if all countries stop using dollars are transaction system the USA will collapse.
      Russia gave billions to Ukraine in order to join their costum Union which will be great succes.

      the US and the western powers do not want to see a strong Russia becouse Russia stands in the way of so called US democracy.

      The media is trying to give Russia a bad name in history many countries tried to conquer Russia and failed.

      If u renember what the Germans did to Jews, everyday they were announcing bad things about Jews so eventually you are starting to believe that all jews are bad and deserve to die.

      The same thing goes for Russia everyday media brings its propaganda.

      The USA if afraid of one thing and that is lossing dollars as international transaction system.

      Without Russia Turks would have harmed us a long time ago.

    • dvo said:

      corruption is not in the goverment but in the people, if people dont change, corruption wont go away you can start a revolution a 1000 times but if your people are corrupted your goverment will also be corrupted.

  2. Pingback: The Last Argument of Kings » Russia Adds Upgraded Warplanes to Armenian Base

  3. Hratch said:

    Unfortunate we’re associated with a third world dictatorial regime, but we have no choice. It’s what we have to do to preserve ourselves.

    • Sarkis said:

      The last part, “but we have no choice. It’s what we have to do to preserve ourselves”, shows that you very clearly understand that Armenia’s alliance with Russia is critical for Armenia’s continued existence in the hostile South Caucasus region surrounded by NATO/turkey, islamists and azeris. That is the most important, fundamental geopolitical fact that I want everyone else to understand.

      But I strongly disagree with your classification of Russia as a third-world country. Russia is one of the most advanced nations on the planet, with the world’s best space-travel technology, satellite technology, missile technology, submarine technology, helicopter technology, weapons technology; and is highly cultured in arts, classical music, literature, drama, sports (specially ice sports) and countless other fields from Tchaikovsky to Dostoevsky. And economically it is a very rich nation with almost unlimited natural resources. Look how well the Sochi Olympics were hosted just recently. Russia may have collapsed in the 1990s, but it is back on track under a decade of strong and competent rule by President Putin. It is very, very, very far from being a third world country. In fact, several hundred thousand Armenians have moved to the rich land of Russia AFTER the collapse of the USSR, and we now have many millionaires and even billionaires there… BTW Russia recently started to once again donate large sums of money as international aid to third world countries, including many in South America.

      And remember, Russia isn’t the one with the NSA who spies on every one of its citizens phone calls, text messages, email and internet traffic and stores copies of the data forever. Russian police don’t taze homeless people or school children, and Russia protects its Christian citizens from vandals like those P. Riot degenerates. I suspect you have never been to Russia and probably get your information about Russia from CNN, NY Times, Fox News or the BBC. I think you would do well to get some real information on Russia from sources other than the propaganda on mainstream western media (the same western media that always denies the Armenian Genocide are the ones that claim Russia is the worst country in the world). I’d say Russia is no more autocratic than the US or any European country, except Russia does not hypocritically pretend it is an example of perfect human rights unlike the west which then destroys third-world countries like Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia and allies itself with the likes of turkey and pakistan.

      Here is an amusing clip from RT on how Russia’s image is twisted and distorted in the west:

      Is there a middle class in Russia?

  4. Sarkis said:

    Meanwhile the turk-loving Americans recently announced that they are UPGRADING the NUCLEAR WEAPONS that they have based in Turkey. Absolutely sickening, these hypocrites are same jerks silently working on regime change in Yerevan through their doom-and-gloom controlled media, and their ravenous NGOs numbering in the 3000s.

    It cannot be any clearer that the world is divided into two camps: One side has America, Europe, Turkey, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and several Sunni Islamist tribes (Chechens, Circassians, Syria’s opposition terrorists); while the other side has the noble Republics of Armenia and Artsakh and the Russian Federation. The battle lines are drawn, any Armenian who advocates western agendas in Armenia or in the Diaspora is, at the very least, an ignorant fool who poses a danger to our interests, if not an outright traitor.

    • Hratch said:

      NOBLE??? That is too funny. If you believe any side is any better than the other, then you are the biggest ignorant fool. Your black and white vision of world affairs is the paramount reason why we are in such perilous times. Armenians have not learned anything in the past 3000 years. It is all about being shrewd, wise and diplomatic in all matters that concern us. We need to make conditions that will attract allies, not praise others in hopes of them liking us.

      • Armenian said:

        Thank God somebody sees through this idea of one country being “superior” and somehow morally exempt from every other thing that makes other countries in the EU and the West evil and corrupt that Sarkis has being trying to propel. And you’re right, we haven’t learned anything in the past 3000 years and anything resembling criticism of Armenia and its dilapidated state of affairs is met with a bunch of bone-headed comments about being “pro-Turkish”, not taking into account that what I’m saying actually has some merit.

        You are absolutely right. Russia is no different from any of the countries in the West and the EU. As far as the original poster goes, personally, I stopped taking him seriously shortly after he posted that “Rise of Russia” blog, which is basically an all out praise-a-thon for Russia. It shows that he has a complete and total bias and paints his interpretation of reality with a uniquely Russian brush. Foremost Russia before anything else, basically.

      • Sarkis said:

        You’re the ignorant fool not me. Here are just a few things wrong with your “reply”

        1) Armenia IS noble, if you don’t believe so that’s fine, I’m sure several turks and azeris, jews and other assorted trash would agree with you. As for Russia, so long as our interests overlap, then they are as noble as can be.

        2) Armenia’s history stretches much further than 3000, but yeah many Armenians have learned nothing. You are a prime example.

        3) If you think I praise Russia because I think the Kremlin is reading my comments on this website, I don’t know what to tell you…

    • Armenian said:

      So, when Russia sinks I guess that means we’re going down with them, right?

      Another reminder that putting all of your hope and faith into one country and not diversifying your relations poses a danger to national security.

      • Sarkis said:

        For once you are absolutely correct! The day Russia is weakened in the South Caucasus will be the day Armenia is officially screwed. No Russia in Armenia = No Armenia in the South Caucasus. Under such a scenario the best we could hope for is that the Turks allow Armenia to exist as its eastern province, but more likely we will have a repeat of 1915. If you learn anything from my posts, understand that I want us to EXPLOIT the opportunity we have right now as Russia is rising in order to strengthen Armenia militarily and economically and in any other way that we can.

        That’s the harsh geopolitical reality for Armenia. The problem with “diversifying” is that there is no longer the possibility of maintaining “complimentary” policies. It’s either/or now as the west and Russia are clearly demarcating their lines. And unfortunately Turkey is just way too useful, large, and manageable to imagine that the powerhouses in Europe and America would ever act in Armenia’s interests against Turkey’s interests. So like it or not, we have no one else to rely on but Russia. The NATO-Turkey axis is out of the question, Iran and India are not powerful enough to keep Armenia afloat, and China is too far away and uninvested.

    • Gurgen said:

      Amen to that, Sarkis.
      I would also go further and say that any Armenian that impulsively refers to our largest and most important strategic ally as a third world dictatorial regime while turning a blind eye to the crimes committed by the west in their “regime changes” and “democracy spreading” around the world is either ignorant or behaving like an ostrich. The battle lines have indeed been drawn a long time ago, only it is getting easier to see them as the crimes of the west become more blatant and obvious. Only fools will keep their old outdated and biased opinions unchanged while viewing the constantly changing world around them. From those people I can only ask one thing – regardless of your current lack of understanding please provide a little more respect towards your homeland and national government and a little more respect towards the only superpower ally that is making it possible for you to have a homeland.

      • Armenian said:

        Because that same superpower making it “possible” for you to have a homeland might decide to give the nod to Azerbaijan to go ahead and invade, causing our people to disperse from their homes once again– or even worse, it might grant a bunch of Azeris Russian passports, and use that as a pretext for siding with the Azeris. Russia will be just as quick to make sure Armenia pays an extraordinary price for “disobedience” than the West; especially because so many critical aspects of our country were given to it out of fear that the sky might fall down on us if we didn’t.

        Russia is part of the reason why we are so isolated from the rest of the world. The Karabagh conflict will never be solved in Armenia’s favor as long as Russia is involved because Russia is the one cashing in on authoritarian rules like Aliyev and the almost-as-corrupt counterparts like Sarkisyan. Russia is only giving you the impression that it is protecting you, but it’s obvious that this image is projected for itself. Armenia cannot act in its own interests because of Russia, and partly because of the idiotic decisions made by our leaders in the first 20 years of independence.

  5. Peter said:

    Listen up my fellow Armenians. Armenians in Armenia and Armenians in the diaspora, need to stand up as one and help each other. We need to serve and contribute to the country of Armenia in one way or the other. Use your imagination and think of all the numerous ways we can all contribute. There are approximately 5-6 million Armenians living abroad. If every other Armenian dedicates at least one thing to their homeland, that would create a better Armenia than we had yesterday and the day before. It does not need to be money at all. It can be something simple as making short inspirational clips and videos about Armenia and its rich culture, its beautiful features and spreading it to outsiders. Let them visit the 1st Christian nation in the world. Let Armenia be a heavily touristic country. This way outsiders will learn to support and appreciate Armenia and also, Armenia will have some kind of additional revenue income. The smallest things matter at this point. Spread the word of contribution and unification.