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The Russian air force will receive a Tu-160 strategic bomber in February and another one by the end of 2006
The Russian air force will receive a Tu-160 strategic bomber in February and another one by the end of 2006, a senior air force official said Tuesday. "We are expecting to receive a Tu-160 [NATO designation Blackjack] soon," head of the strategic air command Lieutenant General Igor Khvorov, said, adding that the bomber will be a modernized version of the aircraft adopted for the use of conventional weapons. "All flaws were eliminated during test flights and the plane has been perfected," Khvorov said. According to the general, another new bomber will be deployed by the end of 2006, and all 14 Tu-160 bombers under his command will be modernized during the scheduled overhaul. Khvorov said the sale of Tu-22M3 (NATO designation Backfire-C) long-range bombers to India had not been resolved yet. "Indian pilots and technical personnel have not been trained in Russia yet because the issue of the sales is still being discussed," he said.
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