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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Air Force Shrinking

MOSCOW () -- The Russian Air Force is shrinking because it lacks funds to buy new aircraft, and its air fleets could be reduced by 25 percent by the end of the century, a report said Tuesday.

Colonel General Pyotr Deinekin, commander of the air force, told Interfax the air force had purchased just 233 aircraft since it was created four years ago. He said the air force needs between 300 and 400 new planes annually to maintain its strength.

Deinekin said the air force was not receiving enough money to maintain aircraft production in state-run factories even at low levels. The Russian Air Force inherited some 6,000 planes from the break up of the Soviet air force.

He said this could lead to the suspension of some aircraft production.