Russia Receives Payment Under Iraqi Arms Deal (30 Mi-28NE and 50 Pantsyr-S1)
Russia has started fulfilling its recent arms exports contract with Iraq after receiving an advance payment from Baghdad, Russian Technologies (Rostech) CEO Sergei Chemezov said.
“The contract is being implemented, the production [of ordered equipment] has started,” Chemezov told RIA Novosti at the opening ceremony of a Russian grenade-launcher assembly facility in Jordan on Thursday.
Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki signed an arms package purchase agreement with Russia worth $4.2 billion during his visit to Moscow in October 2012.
Under the deal, Moscow is to supply 30 Mil Mi-28NE night/all-weather capable attack helicopters, and 50 Pantsyr-S1 gun-missile short-range air defense systems.
The deal was suspended by Iraqi authorities a few weeks after the signing over suspicions of corruption. The Iraqi Parliament initiated an investigation into several officials suspected of taking kickbacks.
However, Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari said in March 2013 that Iraq and Russia had initialed a revised deal and deliveries under the contract would start by summer.
The corruption investigation was closed shortly after but resumed in May. Iraqi officials said at the time the probe would not affect the Russian contract.
Source: AMMAN, RIA Novosti News - 31 May 2013
Photo: The Iraqi Pantsyr-S1 gun-missile short-range air defense systems. Pantsir S1E exported to the UAE on a MAN Cat SX 45 8 x 8 chassis. (Photo by KBP via Miroslav Gyűrösi)