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Russia awaits a political decision to deliver several Yak-130 combat trainer aircraft to Syria 2306131

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World Air Force News - Syria
 
 
Russia awaits a political decision to deliver several Yak-130 combat trainer aircraft to Syria.
 
Russia has manufactured several Yak-130 combat trainer jets for Syria as part of a deal signed in 2011, but no final decision on delivery has yet been made, a Russian official source said on Thursday, June 20,2013. An unspecified number of the aircraft have been produced by aircraft-builder Irkut as part of the $550 million deal for 36 Yak-130s.
     
     

“They are standing outside the factory waiting for a political decision,” a source with the Russian delegation at the Paris Air Show 2013 told RIA Novosti on Thursday, without revealing the number of planes.

The aircraft are bare airframes only and have not yet been fitted with their engines or avionics, the source added.

“If a positive decision is made, the maker’s specialists will intall the engines and avionics and the planes will be delivered to the customer,” the source said.

Earlier this month, Russian Kommersant business daily reported that Russia has already received an advanced payment of $100 million from the Syrian government for the first six jets under the contract.

Russian officials have previously said Russia would not deliver any new types of offensive weapons to Syria, including the Yak-130 aircraft, but insisted they will fulfil contracts for "defensive weapons."

Intended for training pilots of advanced fighter aircraft, the Yak-130 can also be equipped with air-to-surface weapons including guided missiles and bombs, according to the Yakovlev design bureau. Damascus has previously deployed similar fighter ground-attack aircraft against the rebel forces fighting in the civil war in the country, several of which have been shown to be shot down in videos posted on the internet.