International News

Russia-Iraq arms deal worth USD 4.2 billion

On 9 October Iraq and Russia concluded an arms deal worth USD 4.2bn. Iraq, which has been rebuilding its armed forces since the end of US combat operations on its territory, reportedly purchased 30 Mi-28 attack helicopters and 42 Pantsir-S1 surface-to-air missile systems (which can also be used to defend against attacks from jets). It is said discussions are also underway for the acquisition of MiG-29 jets and heavy armoured vehicles along with other weaponry. These arms deals are said to be strategic for Russia, now the second largest arms supplier after the US, due to uncertainty about the future of its arms contracts with Syria and Libya.