Mistral - Japan's answer to the eternal question kurilian Well, Kaliningrad, he will also help, if that
Newspaper Kommersant№ 61 (4361) on 08.04.2010
A military official confirmed the fact appear earlier information that the ship type Mistral appear primarily in the Baltic Sea and the Pacific
Photo: Alexander Koryakov / Kommersant
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Almost a year after the beginning of history with the purchase of Russia from the French Mistral class amphibious assault ship the Ministry of Defence finally tried to clearly explain why they are in fact the country and its armed forces. Yesterday, Deputy Defense Minister of arming Vladimir Popovkin said that Mistral is necessary for the safety of the Kuril Islands and the Kaliningrad exclave of cover.
Universal amphibious assault ship Mistral - displacement of more than 21 thousand tons, hull length 210 m, the speed of full speed - over 18 knots, cruising range - up to 20 thousand miles. Helicopter can take on up to 900 paratroopers, 16 helicopters and landing craft, 13 tanks and 70 vehicles. Its approximate cost - € 400-500 million
Mr Popovkin yesterday reiterated that a political decision on the purchase of a French ship taken, negotiations are going. But not yet been determined, even the format of the transaction: "1 +3" (one buy and three Mistral build under license in Russia) or "2 +2". The contract price was previously estimated by experts at about € 1,5 billion However, according to Mr. Popovkin, it is not about the billions, and hundreds of millions of euros. " The expert community is mostly sharply critical of the deal, pointing out that the Mistral, designed for long-distance ocean operations and radically different from the standards of the Russian Navy, will be useless. But the deputy minister yesterday for the first time explained why, in fact, this ship needs a Russian naval forces.
"We in the Far East have a question not settled the islands from the standpoint of Japan, from our point of view, all agreed ... we have a special Kaliningrad region, which has no direct connection", - said Vladimir Popovkin. According to him, Mistral class ships will bring back the troops and military equipment in case of need. Otherwise, he said, on the Kuril Islands, for example, will have to "deploy factions there and keep thousands of soldiers, officers and weapons." Thus, a military official confirmed the fact appear earlier information that the ship type Mistral will appear primarily in the Baltic Sea and the Pacific.
In addition, Mr. Popovkin stressed that all decisions on the procurement of weapons abroad were the result of analysis conducted by the military, which showed "a sequence where we need to close the hole." And all future contracts for the import of arms should be, he said, involve and technology transfer, including in the case of Mistral. However, as noted by the Director of the Centre for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies Ruslan Pukhov, in the case of a positive decision on its acquisition Russia will still be sold without the main thing - combat information management system SENIT9, as it includes software to manage the diverse forces of NATO countries.