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Harball Sales: Russia Forcing India out of Taijikistan?

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Tajikistan(click to view full) Confronted by a waffling buyer, most vendors don’t immediately think of hostile acts a preferred sales tactic to close the deal. Putin’s Russia, on the other hand, seems to be taking exactly that approach as India remains locked in price negotiations over the former Admiral Gorshkov carrier and SU-30MKI fighters, and considers non-Russian aircraft in its MMRCA medium fighter competition. Plans called for rotating Indo-Russian joint operation of the Ayni air base, located just 15km from Tajikstan’s capital. Its location above Afghanistan and Pakistan, and next to Uzbekistan et. al., makes it an important forward base for India to project special forces into the region, and send aid to Afghanistan over land routes. In July 2007, however… IAF MiG-29B(click to view full) Sify reports that under pressure from a ‘displeased’ regime in Moscow, Tajik Foreign Minister Hamrahon Zaripov declared that the government was no longer negotiating with New Delhi about Ayni, and that India did not have usage rights at the base. Russia maintains a motorized division in Tajikistan for “logistical support,” and has a close relationship built on large foreign debts and security assistance. Russia’s share of India’s defense market has dwindled significantly since its […]

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