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Author Topic: Celebration of the Aviation Day in Ladjevci  (Read 5592 times)
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« on: August 13, 2010, 03:11:08 pm »

Celebration of the Aviation Day in Ladjevci


On the occasion of second August - the Day of the Air Force, organized a commemorative ceremony and flight program have been organized at Ladjevci air field near Kraljevo. The ceremony was attended by Defense Minister Dragan Sutanovac, Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen Miloje Miletic, commander of Air Force Brigadier General Ranko Zivak, members of the 98th aviation base, representatives of the local self-government, the Serbian Orthodox Church including numerous guests.

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Congratulating the Day of the branch and the Patron Saint’s Day of St. Elijah to the members of the aviation, minister Sutanovac said that the Air Force in Serbia have seen both successful and less successful periods. He recalled a century-old tradition of the aviation in our country, pointing out that in two years we will be celebrating a century since the establishment of military aviation in Serbia and that it has been 87 years since we produced the first plane. Today, according to the minister's words, we all strive to stop the long period of stagnation in our aviation which urges us to successfully complete reforms in our army, modernization and the renewal o our Air Force and aviation industry.

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- Overhauling aircrafts, spare parts and plans to equip the air force with new aircrafts, radar and missile systems of new generation, is our way of overcoming the problems that we are currently facing. In this way we are creating the conditions for successful performance of duties and becoming an equal partner in maintaining international peace and security in the region and the world - said the minister Sutanovac.

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The minister stressed that air men should be awarded a special award because despite the harsh conditions they work in they have maintained professionalism, skill and dedication to perform the set flight tasks. In addition, he said, joint military exercises and international air shows bespeak of their achievements. Sutanovac said that aviation has a special place in the minds of the citizens of Serbia and is regarded with respect by other better-equipped and technologically superior air forces.

Defense Minister recalled that in the past two years we have had seven air crafts overhauled, and with another 15 aircrafts yet to be repaired. He said that the number of flight hours of our pilots has increased from 20 to 30 hours, which, he said, is still not enough, but many times more than in the back. Sutanovac expressed his desire to be focused on training junior staff would no longer participate in international exchanges and studies abroad.

An important project, he said, is the process of conversion of military airport in Batajnica, Ladjevci, and probably Ponikve and Kovin, for civil-military purposes. The plane "Swallow," said Sutanovac, is an important product because it will rank Serbia among countries with the history of defense industry.

The minister said that in the years of crisis, the defense system, through the promotion and support to defense industry, has done much in the economic field. Our defense industry is expected to sign a contract that would reach one billion dollars worth of exports of defense industry. Šutanovac believes that this is a way to support the overall economy of Serbia, but also a way to increase the military budget.

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The Minister concluded that in 2009. and 2010. should be remembered as a period in which our defense system has made a step which no one can ignore.

Brigadier General Ranko Živak, in his speech, recalled the history of military aviation since 1893, when the first balloon departments were formed, to date. He pointed out that Serbia was among the top 15 countries that have established a military aviation, and one of the top five to have used them in dog fights.

Živak reminded the present of the courage of pilots who have sacrificed their lives defending the country. Recalling the year 1999, the commander of the Air Force said that none of the pilots who have flown the air crafts had never asked how superior the opponent was.

- They all defend their country and its people while placing military honor above their lives. Therefore, all of them who laid their lives in 1999 and al those who flew the planes defending us deserve eternal gratitude and respect - said Živak.

The Air Force commander said that the steps towards modernization and improvement of aviation flight training are being undertaken, which would contribute to the start of production of aircraft "swallow" that to be used by our air force. General Živak pointed out that the most important mid-term project is the procurement of a new multi-purpose combat aircraft. Currently we are in the process of detailed analysis of the tactical and technical highlights of modern aircraft, followed by a careful consideration of economic aspects in order to find the best solution possible.

Brigadier General Živak presented the commander of Land Forces Lieutenant-General Ljubisa Dikovi? a plaque in gratitude for the cooperation, particularly in the operation of salvaging carrier "Eagle" which landed in Gruza lake.

Assembled citizens had the opportunity to enjoy a rich program where the following air crafts performed stunts: fighters MiG 29, MiG 2, Galeb G4, "Swallow, training plane Gazelle helicopters and Mi -8 as well as transport aircraft AN 26, with 63rd Parachute Battalion members parachuting. In addition to attractive maneuvers of supersonic fighters, special attention of the audience was drawn to the operation of extinguishing fire from helicopter Mi-8.

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Source: Official website Serbian Armed Forces

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