Spectator on facebook

Spectator on facebook

Defence minister: Slovak jet fighters did not endanger passenger airliner

Defence Minister Ľubomír Galko rejected claims that two Slovak Armed Forces MiG-29 jet fighters which approached a Qatar Airways Boeing 747 over the weekend came too close or endangered the lives of those on board the civilian airliner. The source of the reports, published widely in the Slovak media on Tuesday, October 25, was not revealed, the TASR newswire reported.

Defence Minister Ľubomír Galko rejected claims that two Slovak Armed Forces MiG-29 jet fighters which approached a Qatar Airways Boeing 747 over the weekend came too close or endangered the lives of those on board the civilian airliner. The source of the reports, published widely in the Slovak media on Tuesday, October 25, was not revealed, the TASR newswire reported.

“The distance [between the jet fighters and the Boeing 747] was nine kilometres horizontally and 300 metres vertically,” said Ľubomír Svoboda, commander of the Strategic Planning Staff at the General Staff of the Slovak Armed Forces, as quoted by TASR. “So there was no threat. The distance was just less than normal.”

According to the media, Slovakia’s Aviation Operation Service (LPS) also confirmed reports that two interceptors had approached too close to an aircraft which had lost radio contact with ground control on Saturday, October 22.

“If so, LPS is not right,” said Galko, as quoted by TASR, adding that the pilots observed the rules.

Two MiG-29 jets intervened after air traffic controllers in the Czech Republic lost contact with the Qatar Airways plane as it headed eastwards. The Slovak interceptors approached the airliner as it entered Slovak airspace.

The fighter pilots received a visual signal from the Qatari aeroplane that the safety of the passengers was not in danger. Later it emerged that the reason for the loss of contact was a technical problem on board the airliner.

“If some madman was heading towards Jaslovské Bohunice [a nuclear power plant], U.S. Steel or some apartment block in Petržalka [a highly-populated borough of Bratislava], the defence minister has the power to issue an order to intercept the aircraft in such extreme situations,” Galko explained.

Source: TASR

Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

Top stories

Kiska: Even Europe has its aggressive neighbour

President Andrej Kiska addressed UN commenting poverty, instability and climate change.

President Andrej Kiska

Ryanair cancels some flights from and to Bratislava

The Irish low-cost airline publishes full list of cancellations

Irish budget airline Ryanair is believed to be cancelling up to 50 flights every day over the next six weeks because it "messed up" its pilots' holiday schedules.

No fees bring higher summer roaming

EU regulation raises the volume of roaming calls and data with Slovak mobile operators .

People should pay attention on used data abroad.

Fundamental values explored at Divadelná Nitra 2017

This time round, the Slovak, European and US ensembles at the theatre festival focus on #fundamentals, i.e. basic values and the essence of all things.

Nature Theatre of Oklahoma: Pursuit of Happiness