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Defying Fear Of US Sanctions, India and Russia go ahead with major missile deal


New Delhi, Brushing aside the US objections vis-a-vis Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act or CAATSA, India on Friday "concluded the conclusion" of the contract for the supply of the S-400 Long Range Surface to Air Missile System to India. "Both sides welcomed the conclusion of the contract for the supply of the S-400 Long Range Surface to Air Missile System to India," the joint statement said here at the end of delegation level talks led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the visiting Russian President Vladimir Putin. "The sides reaffirmed their commitment to enhance military technical cooperation between India and Russia, which has a long history of mutual trust and mutual benefit. Both sides expressed satisfaction at the significant progress made on the ongoing projects of military technical cooperation and recognized the positive shift towards joint research and joint production of military technical equipment between the two countries," the joint statement said. The S-400 is a mobile missile system that integrates a multi function radar, autonomous detection and targeting systems and anti-aircraft missile systems. Sources say it can simultaneously track 100 airborne targets, including super fighters such as the US-built F-35, and engage six of them at the same time. Notably, there was no mention of the big ticket defence deal which would cost India Rs 39,000 crore in the statements of both the leaders. Mr Putin, however, said the ties between the two countries go beyond the supply of Russian weapons to India.It goes to India’s diplomatic success story that the US had last month indicated that Washington will not “penalise great strategic partners like India” if it inks major defence deal with Russia. At the September 6 Indo-US '2 Plus 2 Dialogue' in Delhi, the CAATSA did not figure. However, the Secretary of State Michael Pompeo later did not miss to tell the journalists accompanying him that the Trump administration will not be keen to "penalise great strategic partners like India".

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