HOME About Blog Contact Hotel Links Donations Registration
NEWS & COMMENTARY 2008 SPEAKERS 2007 2006 2005

Monday, September 11, 2006

Saudi in talks with Russia over weapons sales: Diplomat

September 11th, 2006, 12:37

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia is in talks with Russia over the possible purchase of Russian weapons for the first time by the oil-rich kingdom, which has traditionally used Western defense systems, a Western diplomat said yesterday.

A team of Russian military experts visited Saudi Arabia in late August to discuss with Saudi military committees the possible sale to Riyadh of T-95 main battle tanks and Mi-17 helicopters, he told AFP, requesting anonymity.

"The visit was not the first. It was preceded by several visits by experts" from the Russian state arms export monopoly Rosoboronexport, according to the source.

Saudi arms experts have also visited Moscow to discuss Russian offers of weapons, and tests were carried out on the T-95 in Saudi Arabia to determine the tank's suitability to harsh desert conditions, the diplomat added.

The Saudi armed forces' needs in terms of battle tanks are estimated at around 300. Saudi military experts had conducted tests on French Leclerc tanks more than two years ago.

According to French officials, Leclerc tanks are among weapons systems Riyadh is expected to buy from France under two military accords signed by the two countries in July.

Web IntelligenceSummit.org
Webmasters: Intelligence, Homeland Security & Counter-Terrorism WebRing
Copyright © IHEC 2008. All rights reserved.       E-mail info@IntelligenceSummit.org