US Africa Command (AFRICOM) revealed new evidence of active Russian aircraft in Libyan airspace Thursday, saying it poses a risk for all civilians.
“Russia’s sustained involvement in Libya increases the violence and delays a political solution,” AFRICOM head of operations US Marine Corps Brig. Gen. Bradford Gering said in a statement. “Russia continues to push for a strategic foothold on NATO’s southern flank and this is at the expense of innocent Libyan lives.”
Two images of MiG-29 and Su-24 Russian aircrafts flying through Libya was shared by the command.
In late May, AFRICOM reported at least 14 MiG-29s and several Su-24s were flown from Russia to Syria, where their Russian markings were painted over to camouflage their Russian origin. The aircraft were then flown to Libya in direct violation of a UN arms embargo, according to the US.
“We know these fighters were not already in Libya and being repaired,” said Col. Chris Karns, director of AFRICOM public affairs.
“Clearly, they came from Russia. They didn’t come from any other country,” Karns said.
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