U.S. bought additional Russian helicopters for Afghanistan

  • Mi-17 Afghan Air Force
  • Mi-17 Afghan Air Force

The U.S. Defense Department has concluded with "Rosoboronexport" an agreement for the supply of an additional batch of 12 Mi-17V-5 Air Force in Afghanistan. On this, as reported by RIA Novosti, said the head of the Export Department helicopter and services "Rosoboronexport" Grigory Kozlov. According to him, the number of cars was provided for the option contained in the contract for the supply of 21 multipurpose helicopters Mi-17V-5 in Afghanistan. The contract signed by the parties in May 2011.

The total price of the contract for the supply of Mi-17V-5 helicopters, spare parts and maintenance, is about $ 900 million. "Supplement to the contract for the 12 helicopters was signed, their delivery will be completed in the current year. Funding has already started on this contract, we have no doubt, "- said Kozlov, noting that the new machines will be installed foreign-made equipment, mainly the U.S. -. Equipment from the United States already available in Russia, staffing them helicopters for Afghanistan has already begun.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Department of Defense may enter into with the "Rosoboronexport" a new agreement for the supply of additional multi-purpose helicopters Mi-17V-5 for Afghanistan beyond the already contracted 33 machines. "I think before the end of May, the issue will be resolved, and we are entering a new phase of negotiation for the supply of an additional amount in excess of 21 helicopters plus 12 cars," — said Kozlov, adding that the contract can be signed, despite the "resistance of the some U.S. congressmen. "

Previously, members of Congress repeatedly asked the Pentagon to break a contract with Russia for the supply of multi-purpose helicopters. The reason for these requirements is the support of Russian regime of Bashar al-Assad in Syria and supply of defensive weapons. The Pentagon and the State Department rejected these claims, saying that Russian helicopters are ideally suited for use in environments of Afghanistan. In addition, the Afghan pilots familiar with Russian equipment and do not need to retrain.

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