By Thai Newsroom Reporters
A COUPLE OF the Thai air force’s F-16 Fighting Falcon jets are currently exercising a reconnaissance mission over Thai airspace in northwestern border areas following Myanmar’s airborne attacks on a Kachin rebel base in northernmost Myanmar.
Air force spokesman VM Prapat Sonjaidee confirmed today (Oct. 27) the F-16 fighters from Wing 4 in Takhli are conducting their recon mission exercise over Thai airspace in Mae Hong Son and Tak in northern and western Thailand which share borders with Kayah and Kayin states of Myanmar and in Kamphaengphet, Uthai Thani and Nakhon Sawan in upper central Thailand.
Thai villagers in those border areas were assured of safety and advised to remain calm as the F-16s were conducting their recon exercise twice a day, according to the air force spokesman.
The latest movement of the Thai air force along the common border apparently followed Sunday’s Myanmar air strikes on the Kachin Independence Army base in Kachin state where a celebration and a music concert were reportedly being held, killing an estimated 80 people and wounding many others.
Last July, a Myanmar MiG-29 Fulcrum fighter strayed into Thai airspace over Popphra district of Tak across the border from Myawaddy township in southern Myanmar to launch air strikes on a Karen rebel base.
A couple of F-16 fighters took off from Takhli and scrambled to the scene to deter the possibility of a prolonged airborne intrusion of the MiG-29 jet in Thai airspace.
The Thai air force’s F-16 Fighting Falcon jets. Top photo: Thai Rath, Front Page photo: Matichon