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Sri Lanka orders Russian helicopters

16th May 2009 - 10:00 GMT | by The Shephard News Team


Sri Lanka has ordered a number of military transport helicopters and other weaponry from Russia, the country's defence secretary has said.

"I have managed to reach an agreement with Russia on a loan to purchase military equipment, primarily helicopters for the air force, and other weaponry," Gotabhaya Rajapaksa said, adding that the helicopters had been already ordered.

Rajapaksa did not specify the amount of the deal or the number of helicopters, but said they were needed in the first place "to transport military personnel."

"We will need them in the future. We are already using [Russian-made] Mi-17 and Mi-24 helicopters, and we need more," the official said.
He added that Sri Lanka was willing to develop stronger military ties with Russia.

"We would like to bring our relations to the level where we could share [combat] experience," Rajapaksa said.
"One of the areas of military cooperation could be Russia's help in mine clearing in the north of the country.

Source: RIA Novosti


The Shephard News Team


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