Last flyable Libyan Air Force MiG-23 shot down
Written by defenceWeb, Monday, 15 February 2016
Libyan Air Force Chief of Staff, Brigadier General Saqr al-Jaroushi, said the two-seat aircraft was shot down by anti-aircraft artillery while carrying out air strikes against Islamic militants. The crew were believed to have ejected safely, but their whereabouts were not immediately known.
A military spokesman, Nasser el-Hassi, told Agence France Presse (AFP) the MiG-23UB was hit as it was flying over Qaryunes, northwest Benghazi, as it bombed positions of the Mujahideed Shura Council, a coalition of Islamist militias affiliated to al-Qaeda.
The MiG-23 is believed to have been the last one operational by the Libyan Air Force, which answers to the internationally recognised government in the east of the country.
Two other MiG-23s have been lost in the last couple of months, including a MiG-23MLD on 8 February, which crashed near the eastern city of Derna after attacking Islamic State fighter positions. The LANA news agency, which is close to the recognised government, blamed "technical problems" for the downing, but the spokesman for a coalition of Islamic militias in Derna, Abdul-Moneim al-Shairy, confirmed that his group fired at the jet. On 4 January, a MiG-23ML was shot down over Benghazi.
According to Air Forces Daily, the latest MiG-23 crash leaves one Sukhoi Su-22 and 17 MiG-21s operational. Apparently the two-seat Su-22UM-3K was only recently made airworthy by cannibalising other grounded aircraft, and flew again on 9 February at al-Watiya Air Base.
Libya's internationally-recognized government is battling various militant groups, including Islamic State and a rival alliance of local Islamist forces. Its air force has conducted air strikes against various targets, including oil tankers, and sunk vessels the government has accused of carrying fighters, weapons and ammunition.
Top stories this week
- Don’t go the C-130J route for airlift – Heitman
- A Presidential Flight rather than 21 Squadron ?
- New VVIP aircraft acquisition still shrouded in silence
- SAAF jets fly almost 140 hours during air-to-air camp at AFB Overberg
- Botswana going for Gripen – report
- Kruger helicopter crash investigation reveals training and skills shortfalls
- SAAF mission and training flying hours cut in favour of VVIP flights – DA
- 13 of 26 SAAF Gripens are active; the rest are in rotational storage
- Saab unveils Gripen E
- Super Lynx notches up first local sea rescue
Saab attends Africa Aerospace and Defence 2016
by Saab, 25 August 2016
The company will discuss a number of its solutions, including the Integrated Defence Aids Suite and the Saab 340 Maritime Surveillance system.
Africa Aerospace & Defence Show 2016 coming next month
by Safomar Aviation, 24 August 2016
The Africa Aerospace & Defence Show 2016 will run from 14 to 18 September at the Air Force Base Waterkloof, Centurion.
Truvelo to launch new company during AAD 2016
by Truvelo, 24 August 2016
The company will unveil Truvelo Africa Mechanical Division at the Africa Aerospace and Defence Exhibition, between 14 and 18 September.