Russian fighter jets headed for base in Belarus

April 23, 2013 at 10:11 AM

MINSK, Belarus, April 23 (UPI) -- The first wing of Russian fighter jets will arrive at a military airbase in Belarus later this year, Russia's defense minister said Tuesday.

Sergei Shoigu said a military commandant's office and a wing of combat fighters on alert duty will be established at the Belarus air base this year, the official Russian news agency RIA Novosti reported.

In addition to the fighters, Russia will will deliver four battalions of S-300 surface-to-air missiles to Belarus in 2014, Shoigu said.

He said the decision to deliver missiles was made during a meeting with Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko.

Belarus is part of a Russian-led military alliance of six former Soviet republics.

So far, Russia has signed agreements on creation of joint regional air defense with Belarus and Kazakhstan.

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