Iraq intends to buy Russian defense systems amid US barriers

TEHRAN, May 16 (MNA) – While Washington is still the main obstacle to the purchase of Russian defense systems, Iraqi parliament's Security and Defense Committee announced Baghdad's decision to buy advanced defense systems soon.

According to Iraqi media, Iraq’s parliament, in the 2021 budget, allocated funds for the purchase of advanced military equipment in order to keep pace with the progress of the world's armies.

The Deputy Chairman of the Security and Defense Committee in the Iraqi Parliament, Nayef Al-Shammari, announced on Saturday that the government will contract in the coming months to purchase an air defense system, AW journal reported.

He said in a press statement, that the fiscal budget for 2021 included allocations to provide the armed forces with modern equipment to keep pace with the development in the armies of the world.

He also indicated that the committee had held several meetings with the Minister of Defense and the Commander of Air Defense in this regard.

He added that the government will contract during the next few months with important companies to provide Iraq with a modern air defense system.

Al-Shammari also clarified that the contract is exclusively within the purview of the Ministry of Defense, and through the Ministry of Equipping and Armament Department, and that the state will monitor all the contracts that it will enter into.

Citing Iraqi parliamentarians, US media had reported that the Iraqi government was considering moving forward with discussing the purchase of Russian “S-400” air defense systems, but the US State Department announced that it might impose sanctions on it if it decided to buy the Russian systems.

Last year, Moscow had repeatedly affirmed its willingness to meet Iraq’s requests with regard to armament and military cooperation.

It is noteworthy that Iraq has been trying to purchase Russian air defense systems since 2017, but the threat to impose economic sanctions by the United States is reportedly what impedes the negotiations.

RHM/PR

News Code 173498

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