US, Chinese unease as Putin seeks India arms deals

Young Sergey Skripal as a lieutenant in the Russian Airborne Troops

Young Sergey Skripal as a lieutenant in the Russian Airborne Troops

Putin will is scheduled to hold talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi tomorrow.

All eyes are on Russian President Vladimir Putin's two-day visit to India starting Thursday, October 4, since the occasion could see India and Russia inking a deal over Moscow granting India S-400 Triumf anti-aircraft missile systems. India depended on Russian Federation for political support as well as billions of dollars in military hardware.

Before leaving for Moscow, Mr Putin will have a meeting with President Ram Nath Kovind at Rashtrapati Bhavan.

President Vladimir Putin lashed out at ex-spy Sergei Skripal as a "scumbag" and a "traitor" in his harshest public response yet to accusations that Russian Federation targeted the double agent in the first chemical-weapons attack in Europe since the Second World War. "We released him and that was it, he left".

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"The S-400 systems have not been battle-tested but technologically they are quite good, also relatively cheap". Putin arrived in India on Thursday for a two-day visit during which India is expected to sign a $5 billion deal to buy Russian S-400 air defense systems despite a new US law ordering sanctions on any country trading with Russia's defense and intelligence sectors. All eyes will be on the S-400 deal Triumf air defence missile systems agreement that worths Dollars 5 billion.

The Russian S-400s are now the best complexes in their class. India has "healthy pragmatism", and it doesn't want "to somehow annoy" Washington by purchasing them, Aleksey Martynov, a director of the International Institute of the Newly Established States group, told RT.

Modi's government, caught in the U.S. -Russia crossfire, hopes the Trump administration will give it a pass on the proposed arms transfer from Russian Federation, officials in New Delhi said. The two sides are expected to hold talks on setting up a new payment mechanism independent of the United States controlled dollar trade.

The 24-hour visit that could have lasting implications for the India-U.S. relationship as well.

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Putin and Modi, who appear to enjoy a personal rapport, are also likely to discuss a deal for four Krivak-class frigates worth $2 billion and 200 light utility Ka-226 helicopters pegged at $1 billion.

India is the world´s biggest arms importer and is undergoing a $100-billion upgrade of its ageing hardware, much of it of Soviet vintage including MiG jets that have frequently crashed in the Indian countryside.

The last annual summit was held on 1 June, 2017, during the visit of the prime minister to Russian Federation. Both leaders will also meet with young Indian and Russian student "geniuses" who have excelled in studies, as a part of an educational exchange programme.

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