Kamis, Maret 04, 2010

Russia Selling Gunships, Not Fighters, To Lebanon

BEIRUT, Lebanon - Russia has agreed to supply Lebanon with Mi-24 helicopter gunships instead of the MIG-29 fighter jets originally agreed, the office of Lebanese President Michel Sleiman said .

"The Russian authorities agreed to replace the MIG-29 fighters, initially foreseen in their military aid, with Mi-24 helicopters as the Lebanese army urgently needs this type of aircraft equipped with rockets and sophisticated means of defense," a statement said.

Sleiman held talks with his Russian counterpart, Dmitry Medvedev, in Moscow, the first visit by a Lebanese head of state to Russia.

Lebanon's defense minister, Elias Murr, told reporters 10 Mi-24s would be delivered instead of 10 MIG-29s.

The statement from Sleiman's office said that while in Moscow the president also signed a "military cooperation agreement providing for the supply of equipment to the Lebanese army and the training of its officers and men."

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