NEW DELHI: In a boost to India’s air defence capabilities, Russia on Sunday announced that it has started the delivery of its S-400 Triumf air defence systems to the country.
“The first supplies have already been started,” Interfax cited Dmitry Shugayev, the head of the Russian military cooperation agency, as saying on Sunday at an aerospace trade show in Dubai.
The S-400 is known as Russia’s most advanced long-range surface-to-air missile defence system.
Shugayev said the first unit of an S-400 systems will arrive in India by the end of this year.
Sources in the Indian defence industry said the parts of the air defence system have started reaching India and they would be first deployed at a location close to the Western border from where it can tackle threats from both parts of the western and northern frontiers with Pakistan and China.
Sources said the equipment is being brought to India through both sea and air routes.
The air defence system would give India an edge in South Asian skies as they would be able to take out enemy aircraft and cruise missiles from a distance of 400km.
Threat of US sanctions
The supplies will put India at risk of sanctions from the United States under a 2017 American law aimed at deterring countries from buying Russian military hardware.
The US has named countries like Russia, North Korea and Iran as adversaries under Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA).
New Delhi said it has a strategic partnership with both the United States and Russia while Washington told India it was unlikely to get a waiver from CAATSA.
Following US sanctions on Turkey over the procurement of S-400 missile systems last year, there were renewed apprehensions that Washington may impose similar punitive measures on India.
In October 2018, India had signed a $5 billion deal with Russia to buy five units of the S-400 air defence missile systems. The then Trump administration had warned India that going ahead with the contract could invite US sanctions.
(With inputs from agencies)





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