Former Air chief makes statement to FCID on MiG deal

Former Air Force Commander Roshan Goonetileke was questioned today on the the controversial MiG deal.Last week newspaper articles published with regard to the controversial deal were being collected as part of the investigation.The purchase of four MiG-27 aircraft in 2006 at a cost of US$ 2.462 million each and the procedure followed in relation to the purchase had been clouded in mystery.The Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) on behalf of the Government signed an agreement with Ukrinmash (a Ukranian company) for the supply of four MIG-27 aircraft as well as the overhauling of four existing SLAF MiG-27 aircraft. However the Colombo Fort Magistrate’s court rejected the request. Since last year Weeratunga claimed he was living in Ukraine and refused to return to Sri Lanka. (Colombo Gazette) Current Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera and Sripathi Sooriyaarachchi, two key ministers, who broke away from the then Mahinda Rajapaksa led government, filed a complaint later with the Bribery Commission alleging corruption in the deal. In July this year the FCID sought a court order to get INTERPOL assistance to arrest Sri Lanka’s former Ambassador to Russia, Udayanga Weeratunga as part of investigations over the deal.

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