India Quietly Inks Missile Deal With Russia Despite US Sanctions Threat

The joint statement issued by both countries did mention the signing of the deal, but in paragraph 45.

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The deal for the S-400 missile defence system was finalised today in New Delhi


New Delhi: 

Highlights

  1. The S-400 Triumf is the world's most lethal surface-to-air missile
  2. The deal was signed on the fringes of the summit, Dmitry Peskov
  3. India is hoping that the US will give it a waiver on the weapons systems

India and Russia today concluded the contract signing for a major 5 billion dollar missile deal that could invite sanctions from the United States of America. The deal for the S-400 missile defence system was finalised today in New Delhi in a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The deal for Moscow's most advanced surface-to-air defence system was said to be the focus of Mr Putin's two-day visit to New Delhi, however, its announcement was extremely low key, with neither of the two leaders saying anything in their statements to the media.

The joint statement issued by both countries did mention the signing of the deal, but in paragraph 45. "The Sides welcomed the conclusion of the contract for the supply of the S-400 Long Range Surface to Air Missile System to India. 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," it said.

In his statement, PM Modi spoke of the special and privileged strategic partnership between the two nations. "We have taken some important steps today which will strengthen our relationship," he said. While Mr Putin said "We have agreed to step up cooperation with India in combating the menace of terrorism and drug trafficking."

"The deal was signed on the fringes of the summit," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told news agency Reuters.

The S-400 Triumf is the world's most lethal surface-to-air missile. 

"As and when the government approves it, delivery (of the missiles) will be in 24 months," Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa has told reporters.

India is hoping that the US will give it a waiver on the weapons systems which New Delhi sees as a deterrent against China's bigger and superior military.

Under a new law -- Countering America's Adversaries through Sanctions Act or CAATSA -- the US imposes sanctions on any country that has "significant transactions" with Iran, North Korea or Russia.

However, the US Congress recently passed another law that could give countries like India a waiver from the sanctions, but that still has not been signed by President Trump.

Just last week, the US imposed sanctions on China for purchasing the same missile system from Russia.

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