Government on purchase of F-16 planes: "There is still road to cover"

The Minister of Government Affairs, Carolina Tohá, has asked the public not to jump to conclusions and assured that for now the subject "is moving ahead as planned".

26 de Mayo de 2009 | 13:23 | El Mercurio Online

SANTIAGO.- "There is nothing new". This was the emphatic statement made by government spokesperson Carolina Tohá while mentioning the press reports indicating that Chile and Holland may have reached the beginnings of an agreement for the purchase of eighteen F-16 planes.

"What has happened is simply that the process has continued. Stages have been fulfilled, but the process still has a lot of road to cover and is moving along normally. There is nothing new to say about it, simply that the process is moving along as planned", stated the spokesperson for La Moneda.

Tohá also asked the public not to jump to "other conclusions".

Nevertheless, reports yesterday indicated that the Undersecretary of Dutch Defense, Jack de Vries, sent a letter to the Parliament of his country confirming the agreement with Chile made for the F-16 planes, which is necessary to complete the purchase.

The news of the possible agreement surprised President Michelle Bachelet during her official visit to Holland. "If you tell me that in Santiago this has been confirmed, I want to tell you that it sounds like very good news, but the truth is that that has not been the outcome of our gathering, so you are giving the news to me", she told reporters who questioned her about the topic.

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