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Russia agrees to sell attack helicopters to Sudan: report

August 19, 2013 (WASHINGTON) – Sudan and Russia sealed two agreements since 2011 for the sale of two dozen Mi-24 attack helicopters and 14 MI-8 transport helicopters, a Russian newspaper reported today.

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Russian-manufactured MI-24 helicopter (Daily Telegraph)

The first batch of the shipment was delivered in 2012 in accordance with a contract between two countries a year earlier and the second one was scheduled for delivery this year per a second agreement, Vedomosti business daily quoted two aviation sources as saying.

An analyst surveyed by Vedomosti put the value of the contract to be between $150-$200 million which includes maintenance and certain upgrades to the helicopters.

But conditions were attached by Russia to the sale including not using it in Sudan’s restive region of Darfur per United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions banning military flights there.

Russia has already informed the UN Sanctions Committee about the pending sale in a letter sent last February, Vedomosti said.

It is not illegal to supply weapons to Khartoum, the Sudanese capital, but states are required to have so-called "end-use" guarantees from the Sudanese government that the arms will not end up in Darfur.

But rights groups assert that Sudan routinely uses weapons sold by Russia, China and Belarus in Darfur.

In a related issue, a source close to Russia’s agency for defense sales known as Rosoboronexport, said that Sudan is also negotiating the purchase of 18 former Indian Su-30K fighters that are stored in an aircraft repair plant in Belarus.

(ST)