Defense Minister Suren Papikyan met with Indian Defense Minister Shri Rajnath Singh

Armenia to Appoint Defense Attaché to India

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YEREVAN (Azatutyun) — Armenia’s government decided on Thursday, May 18, to appoint a defense attaché to its embassy in India, citing deepening military ties between the two countries.

A government statement attributed the decision to “strong interest shown recently by state structures, private organizations and companies of the military-industrial complex towards bilateral cooperation.”

It said that the Armenian military attaché in New Delhi will be tasked with coordinating ongoing Indian-Armenian defense programs and proposing new ones.

The move follows a series of defense contracts signed by Yerevan with Indian arms manufacturers last year.

In particular, Armenia reportedly purchased $245 million worth of Indian multiple-launch rocket systems, anti-tank rockets and ammunition. Defense Minister Suren Papikyan explored the possibility of more such deals when he visited India in October.

Indian media reported afterwards that the two sides signed in November a $155 million deal to supply Indian 155-millimeter self-propelled howitzers to the Armenian army in the coming years. Yerevan did not officially confirm that either.

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The reported deals may undermine Russia’s status as the main supplier of weapons and ammunition to Armenia. In an apparent reference to Moscow, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan complained last September that “our allies” have failed to deliver weapons to Armenia despite contracts signed with them in the last two years.

The secretary of the country’s Security Council, Armen Grigoryan, similarly said earlier this month that “we are not receiving what we ordered from Russia and what we paid for.” But he too did not go into details.

 

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