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Russian Arctic island to serve as base for military transport planes

August 11, 2014, 18:35 UTC+3 BALASHIKHA (Moscow Region)
The aerodrome will eventually be able to receive planes all the year round and not only during nine months as is the case now
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© ITAR-TASS/Marina Lystseva

BALASHIKHA (Moscow Region), August 11. /ITAR-TASS/. A Russian Arctic aerodrome will be upgraded to receive Ilyushin Il-76 heavy military transport planes, Commander-in-Chief of the Russian Air Force, Col.-General Viktor Bondarev said on Monday.

Plans are afoot to make the Temp aerodrome on the Kotelny Island of the New Siberian Islands archipelago off Yakutia suitable for Il-76 aircraft, he said.

“We eventually plan to land Il-76 aircraft there. There are all the necessary conditions for this there,” the commander-in-chief of the Russian Air Force said.

The aerodrome will eventually be able to receive planes all the year round and not only during nine months as is the case now, he said.

The restoration of the military base on the New Siberian Islands, which was abandoned after the break-up of the Soviet Union, will help ensure effective and safe control in this part of the Arctic, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in September 2013.

“Our military left the place in 1993. Meanwhile, the place is a very important spot in the Arctic Ocean and a new stage in the development of the Northern Sea Route,” the Russian president said at the time.

“We have agreed that we’ll both restore the military base there and bring the airfield into order and make it possible for workers of the Emergencies Minister, hydrologists and climate specialists to take part in joint work to ensure safe and effective operations along the Northern Sea Route,” Putin said at the time.

The Russian Air Force currently pays special attention to creating and developing a network of airfields in the Arctic, the commander-in-chief said.

“Efforts are underway to develop the Rogachyovo aerodrome on Novaya Zemlya and other northern aerodromes in Vorkuta, Tiksi, Anadyr and on Cape Schmidt, as well as others. These aerodromes will be restored and used as bases for our aviation,” Bondarev said.

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