Russia to supply radar system for Iraqi Air Force airfield — source

The Russian equipment will ensure radar control and navigation at a distance of up to 400 kilometres form the aerodrome and instrument landing of aircraft in poor visibility conditions


MOSCOW, November 13. /TASS/. Russia is supplying to Iraq flight radio-technical support equipment for an aerodrome of the country’s Air Force, a source in the military-technical cooperation sphere told TASS on Friday.

“The supply of this equipment for the Iraqi Air Force is currently underway. The contract provides for equipping an aerodrome in Iraq with flight radio-technical support equipment,” the source said.

According to him, the Russian equipment will ensure radar control and navigation at a distance of up to 400 kilometres form the aerodrome and instrument landing of aircraft in poor visibility conditions.

In recent years Iraq has been a major buyer of Russian weapons and equipment. In 2012, the sides signed a contract package on the supply to Baghdad of various military equipment worth $4.2 billion. Iraqi officials have repeatedly displayed an interest in the development of military-technical cooperation with Russia.

Iranian Planes Bring Iraqi Volunteer Battalion to Fight ISIL in Syria

Iranians take pictures in front of a C-130 plane in an exhibition of achievements and equipment of Iran's air force in Tehran, Iran, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2015


The first photographic evidence of an Iranian Air Force plane that brought Iraqi Shiite volunteer fighters to Syria to fight against ISIL terrorists has appeared on the Internet.

A picture posted on the Instagram account of the Iranian group Holy Defense shows an Iraqi soldier standing in front of an Iranian C-130 Hercules military transport aircraft supposedly in Syria.

“This is probably the first picture of an Iranian Hercules made in Syria and the first documented evidence of the Iranian Air Force being in Syria. Flights have been made from Mehrabad International Airport in Tehran and the city of Tabriz [in the northwest of Iran] since the beginning of the Syrian conflict,” a source from Holy Defense told Sputnik.

Iranian planes also bring drones that are used for reconnaissance flights above ISIL military bases, the source told Sputnik.

Comments underneath the picture reveal that some of the Iraqi fighters came to Syria after the beginning of Russian anti-ISIL airstrikes in Syria.

Apart from Iraqi volunteer fighters, the Iranian planes brought with them arms and military equipment, Holy Defense said.

Arms exporter confident terrorists won’t get Russians arms supplied to Iraq, Syria — CEO

© ITAR-TASS/Marina Lystseva

MOSCOW, October 27. /TASS/. Russia’s state arms exporter Rosoboronexport is supplying armaments to Syria  and these supplies are no secret because they are legitimate, Rosoboronexport CEO Anatoly Isaikin said Tuesday.

“I believe much has been said about Syria in recent months that the supplies to Syria are legitimate. This is not a secret as the armaments were and are coming to Syria and are intended to fight terrorists. There are no breaches of international treaties,” he said.

“We’re supplying arms to Iraq only to the central government and the contracts naturally stipulate a ban on the transfer of Russian arms to other hands. We are confident that the Iraqi government firmly abides by this rule and the Syrian government also observes it,” the Rosoboronexport head said at a briefing for journalists.

Russia’s arms export won’t be affected by situation in Ukraine

The situation in Ukraine will by no means affect the amount of weapons Russia provides to foreign customers, Rosoboronexport CEO Anatoly Isaikin has said.

According to the official Russia will carry through its armaments export plan in 2015 despite sanctions.

“The most important thing is that Rosoboronexport is not lowering its target indicators amid conditions of unfair competition from Western countries. We expect this plan mapped out for 2015 to be carried out in full,” Isaikin told a briefing for journalists.

The CEO also noted that Rosoboronexport has supplied arms worth more than $115 billion to 116 countries over the last 15 years.

The export portfolio of orders for today is worth $45 billion,” Isaykin told journalists at a briefing.

According to Isaykin, Rosoboronexport supplied $12.9 billion worth of arms in 2012, and $13.2 billion – in 2013 and 2014. Isaykin added that the share of aviation stands at 41% from all exported products, equipment for ground forces – 27%, air defense – 15%, fleet – 15%.

Rosoboronexport accepts payments from some countries in their currencies

The official also said Rosoboronexport already accepts payments from some countries in their national currencies.

“The previous payment rules implied the use of the dollar or the euro. Now we have switched to settlements in national currencies with some partners. Incidentally, this procedure already works under some contracts,” Isaikin told a news briefing on Tuesday.

“Over the four years we have been under US sanctions we have increased export 50%. The current sanctions follow the same pattern. Naturally we feel some problems, but settlements under our contracts are in progress. We are more flexible in our relations with partners,” he said.

Hybrid Warfare: Iraqi Forces Add Russian Machine Gun to US Abrams Tank

US Army M1A2 Abrams battle tank is pictured during a joint military drill


Iraqi forces have attached Russian machine gun plus Iranian ammo to American Abrams tank in order to achieve maximum effectiveness in their fight against ISIL.

An MIA1 main battle tank, one of 146 frontline tanks that the US sold to Baghdad, has been equipped with a Russian.50-caliber machine gun and Iranian-stamped 12.75-mm ammunition, according to a source at the repairs facility where the tank was dropped off for repairs, website Defense News reported.

The US-Russian tank hybrid has unnerved the Pentagon. According to the officials the hybrid could result in violations of Iraq’s FMS agreements with Washington, due to unauthorized use by Shiite militias and the unsanctioned addition of the Russian gun and Iranian ammo.

“Any time you do a foreign military sale, there’s a requirement that you do end-use monitoring, and it’s a violation if you do alterations,” Vice Adm. Joseph Rixey, director of the Pentagon’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) told Defense News.

But according to Iraqi officials Iraq must do what needs to be done in fight against ISIL. “Iraq has been dependent on a number of different weapons suppliers; therefore they have integrated these weapons onto different platforms to achieve effectiveness,” Dr. Wathaq al-Hashimi, director of the Iraqi Group for Strategic Studies told Defense News.

He further elaborated that the “Russian systems were placed on American M1 Abrams tanks specially with armor-piercing rocket systems to be used against ISIL explosive cars used in their attacks.” “In Beiji [in Northern Iraq], there were 28 explosive cars used in one day and in Ramadi 15 cars were blown on another day,” al-Hashmi said.

Iraq has a long history and experience in weapons and hybridization, al-Hashimi said, noting that Iraqi military experts receive weapons from American, Russian, Iranian and European sources.Washington has also expressed concern about the weapons falling into someone else’s hands other than the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF).

On this note, retired Israel Air Force Maj. Gen. Amos Yadlin, former head of Israeli military intelligence, said he would not be surprised if Hezbollah forces in Iraq or even Syria had access to American MBTs.

“It’s not surprising, because the Iraqi Army and the Shia militias and the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Quds Force and some American Special Forces are now fighting against the same enemy,” Yadlin said, Defense News reported.

Iraq, Saudi Arabia want to buy nearly 1,500 Russian infantry fighting vehicles — company

© ITAR-TASS/Marina Lystseva

MOSCOW, September 30. /TASS-DEFENSE/. Iraq plans to acquire 500 and Saudi Arabia 950 BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicles from Russia, Albert Bakov, first vice president and co-owner of the Tractor Works Concern, the manufacturer of these machines, told TASS today.

“We’ve got an application for 500 BMP-3s from Iraq and for 950 from Saudi Arabia,” the interlocutor told the Agency.

He noted that there are no problems with orders, but a balance must be set between those for export and for the domestic market. “In 2016 we’ll start conveyor manufacturing to fulfill all the orders on time. However, the conveyor start-up calls for a lot of work in the component supply segment,” Bakov added.

Previously it became known that before the end of 2017 the Russian Defense Ministry is due to receive over 200 new BMP-3s. In addition, there were reports that those combat machines might be purchased by Myanmar and Morocco planning to acquire small lots of 35 to 40 IFVs.

As per unclassified sources, the BMP-3s are in service with a number of countries, including Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates. Russia is currently fulfilling an order to upgrade 135 infantry fighting vehicles of the UAE. The work is expected to be completed early next year.

Stratfor: Russia Can Build Air Bases in Iraq, but Probably Won’t Do It

Two russian Su-30 land at airfield near Latakia


The recent events in Syria have snown that Russia is capable of building an air base in about a month; this is what the Kremlin may decide to do to strike ISIL targets in Iraq more effectively. However, in the end Moscow probably won’t do it, according to US military magazine and global intelligence company Stratfor.

In fact, Russia can already hit ISIL targets in Iraq, but since its aircraft are stationed in Latakia, Western Syria, Russian fighters have to spend less time bombing their targets in Iraq than they do it in Syria.

Furthermore, when flying to Iraq, Russian planes have to carry fewer missiles, because they need to use an extra fuel tank. Of course, Russia can always choose to conduct aerial refueling operations for its planes, but this might increase the chances of an accident and most importantly force Moscow to commit a lot more resources for its military campaign, Stratfor explained.That’s why it would have been more effective for Russia to set up an air force base in Iraq, so Russian planes could carry out their operations without having to fly back to air bases in Syria, Stratfor said.

“There are already many unused runways available to the Russians there, and the recent deployment into Syria has shown Russia is perfectly capable of establishing an effective air base in about a month,” Stratfor pointed out.

However, to build an air base in Iraq, Russia will have to commit more resources to install logistical support systems and deploy ground forces to provide protection for an air base. This would certainly come at a cost and it’s not likely that Moscow wants to commit a lot of money, Stratfor reported.

Moreover, the deployment of Russian ground forces in Iraq to protect the air base would put Russian soldiers close to US troops already stationed in Iraq; this might increase a chance of confrontation between the United States and Russia, the magazine said.Finally, it will depend largely on Iraq itself whether it wants to invite Russians into its own territory. The Iraqi government understands that the US forces spent a great deal of time and resources in the country and that’s why Washington wouldn’t be particularly pleased if the Iraqis asked the Russians to come in. Thus, Stratfor predicted that the Iraqi government wouldn’t want to strain its relationship with the United States.

Iraq, Russia Review Military-Technical Cooperation Agreements

An Iraqi helicopter flies over military vehicles in Husaybah, in Anbar province July 22, 2015


The delegation of Russia’s federal service for military-technical cooperation (MTC) that came to Baghdad reviewed the existing deals between Russia and Iraq, according to an Iraqi Defense Ministry spokesman.

The delegation of Russia’s federal service for military-technical cooperation (MTC) has reviewed several deals with Iraq during its visit to Baghdad, some of the agreements will be continued while some will be halted due to difficulties, an Iraqi Defense Ministry spokesman told Sputnik.”The participants of the meeting have again reviewed the existing deals between Russia and Iraq, they made a decision to stop implementation of some and continue [implementation] of others. Difficulties which arise from the managerial point of view as well as technical issues were discussed,” Tahsin Ibrahim said.

Russia and Iraq has been actively cooperating in various areas, including in military-technical development, oil and investment.In July, the sides signed an agreement on military-technical cooperation, to aid Iraq in countering Islamic State jihadist group advances in the country.

On Wednesday, Iraqi Parliament Defense and Security Committee Chairman Haqim Zamli told Sputnik that Iraq may turn to Russia for military help in the fight against Islamic State if Russian airstrikes in Syria prove successful.