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Reliable Russian Aircraft Cruiser to Stand In for Missing French Mistrals

© AP Photo / FileThe Russian navy's Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft cruiser. file photo
The Russian navy's Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft cruiser. file photo - Sputnik International
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The Ka-52K Katran attack helicopters will soon be deployed aboard the Russian aircraft cruiser Admiral Kuznetsov, in what will allow the warship to have characteristics similar to those of the Mistral assault ships France had originally promised to build for Russia, according to the Russian newspaper Izvestia.

An RT correspondent stepped on board the Mistral assault ship, shortly after it was reported that the first helicopter carrier of two purchased by Egypt from France had arrived in Alexandria - Sputnik International
Sail Like an Egyptian: Reporting From the Deck of a French Mistral
The deployment of 30 Ka-52K Katran attack helicopters on board the Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov will make it possible to significantly improve its characteristics, which are expected to be tantamount to those of the Mistral assault ships, the Russian newspaper Izvestia reported.

It quoted former Russian Defense Ministry spokesman as saying that the KA-52K's deployment will enable the Admiral Kuznetsov to perform a spate of coastal missions, something that is typically performed by Mistral amphibious ships.

© Sputnik / Alexei Danichev / Go to the photo bankThe Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft cruiser
The Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft cruiser  - Sputnik International
The Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft cruiser

In August 2015, Paris and Moscow formally terminated the 1.2-billion-euro deal on the Mistral warships; France had formerly agreed to construct and deliver the two Mistral-class helicopter carriers to Russia.

© Sputnik / Vitaliy Ankov / Go to the photo bankThe Ka-52 "Alligator" attack helicopter, seen here supporting a landing party during exercises of the Russian Pacific Fleet
The Ka-52 Alligator attack helicopter, seen here supporting a landing party during exercises of the Russian Pacific Fleet - Sputnik International
The Ka-52 "Alligator" attack helicopter, seen here supporting a landing party during exercises of the Russian Pacific Fleet

Shortly afterwards, French President Francois Hollande confirmed that a deal had been reached with Egypt for the delivery of the two Mistrals to the Arab country.

© AFP 2021 / JEAN-SEBASTIEN EVRARDMistral assault ships. file photo
Mistral assault ships. file photo  - Sputnik International
Mistral assault ships. file photo

The Admiral Kuznetsov is Russia's only aircraft cruiser, and sometimes designated by the West as an aircraft carrier; it was commissioned into the Soviet Navy on December 25, 1990.

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