Russian magazine: Belarus to receive used India fighter jets
Sep 16, 2011, 10:49 GMT
Moscow - Belarus is expected receive 18 renovated fighter jets that until recently were operated by the Indian air force, a leading Russian news magazine reported Friday.
The Belarusian air force 'is most likely' to obtain the Russian-built Su-30K planes after their refurbishment, Kommersant news magazine reported, citing an unnamed official in national arms trading company Rosoboroneksport.
The price of a single fighter jet, once modernized, would be 15 million dollars, the article said, adding that the overhaul take place at a facility in the Belarusian city Baranovichy.
However, the Kremlin has reportedly not made a final decision on where the former Indian jets will be sold, while ruling out Syria and Sudan as possible recipients.
A 1996 Moscow-Delhi arms deal marked the first foreign sale of Russia's Su-30 fighter, a plane touted by Moscow at the time as capable of competing on even terms with all but the very best US fighters.
But the first 18 of a planned 230 aircraft were sent to India with simplified avionics, because of Russian production problems.
India is now returning these less capable planes, designated Su-30K, to the Russian manufacturer Sukhoi, after replacing them with the more capable Su-30MKI fighter jet, the article said.
The Su-30MKI is India's main air superiority fighter jet, a type of aircraft designed to seize control of enemy airspace. Dehli currently operates 140 of the jets, and is planning to manufacture more under license.
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