01:20 GMT +3 hours24 November 2014
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Peru Gets Upgraded Mi-25 Gunships to Boost Drug Fight

World
(updated 18:28 28.10.2014)
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Four Mil Mi-25 Hind D attack helicopters, modernized in Russia, have joined the Peruvian Air Force to boost its combat capability in the fight against terrorism and drug trafficking.

Four Mil Mi-25 Hind D attack helicopters, modernized in Russia, have joined the Peruvian Air Force to boost its combat capability in the fight against terrorism and drug trafficking.

The choppers have been assembled in Peru by Russian specialists after their transfer from Russia. They are part of a $20-mln upgrade deal involving seven Mi-25s, whose service life has been extended by seven years.

Peruvian Defense Minister Pedro Cateriano, who inspected the overhauled helicopters at the La Joya air base in the southern region of Arequipa, stressed that these were attack helicopters, although they retained troop transport capability.

The Mi-25s will be deployed in November in the area of Valle de los Rios Apurimac, Ene and Mantaro (Vraem) where the fight against militant groups and drug-trafficking is hampered by rugged terrain, the jungles, and high elevation.

Mi-25s proved to be very effective in combat engagements in the Andes.

Mi-25 is an export version of Russia’s Mi-24 Hind attack helicopter, called by Soviet and Russian pilots ‘the flying tank’ due to its heavy armor and formidable firepower.

Peru has a total of 16 Mi-25 and Mi-35P helicopters in service with the country’s air force.