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22 Jan, 2021 08:30

Deal for Russia to supply Myanmar with Pantsir-S1 air defense systems & reconnaissance drones announced during Shoigu visit

Deal for Russia to supply Myanmar with Pantsir-S1 air defense systems & reconnaissance drones announced during Shoigu visit

Russia is set to supply Myanmar with Pantsir-S1 anti-aircraft missile and gun systems, Orlan-10E surveillance drones and radars. The deal was signed during Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu’s visit to the country on Thursday.

Shoigu arrived in Myanmar for his first foreign trip of 2021 to discuss military cooperation between the states. The southeast Asian country is one of Russia’s traditional partners for arms exports.

“We view today’s talks as an opportunity to further our cooperation, especially in the military field,” Shoigu said as he met with Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, the commander-in-chief of the Myanmar Armed Forces. The two previously spoke via video link in November.

“Regardless of the restrictions these difficult times have brought us, we hope to deepen the relations between our defense agencies,” Shoigu said, adding that Moscow is ready for “substantial” discussions.

Hlaing thanked Shoigu for the visit. “Just like a loyal friend, Russia has always supported Myanmar in difficult moments, especially in the last four years,” the general was quoted by Russian media as saying.

Apart from the supply deal, the two countries signed an agreement on flight safety cooperation.


Russian Deputy Defense Minister Aleksandr Fomin told RT before Shoigu’s trip that the Association of the Southeast Asian Nations, of which Myanmar is a member, plays “a key role in maintaining peace and security in the region.” He said that the countries’ militaries continue to work together despite the Covid-19 pandemic.

Myanmar is a traditional buyer of Russian arms, and participated in a joint drill with Russia last year. Since the early 2000s, Myanmar has bought Russian-made MiG-29 jet fighters, as well as helicopters, air defense missile systems, artillery, and radars. The countries also currently have a contract on six Su-30 warplanes.

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