16:33 GMT +317 January 2020
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): India and Russia signed a $5.43 billion contract in 2018 for the purchase of five S-400 missile defence systems, despite US threats to slap sanctions on any country that buys from Russia’s defence sector under CAATSA (Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act).

    After India and the US signed an Industrial Security Annex (ISA) during the second 2+2 dialogue between India's foreign and defence ministers and the US Secretary of State and Secretary of Defense in Washington, a US State Department official suggested that India purchase American weapons systems rather than Russia’s S-400.

    A senior State Department official said: “The S-400 has been a longstanding issue. India’s very well aware of the concerns we have both over – our concerns related to Russia and encouraging Russia’s behaviour, but also our concerns over our ability to achieve the inter-operability that we seek with India.”  

    At a time when New Delhi and Washington had also finalised three agreements under the Defence Technology and Trade Initiative, aimed to enhance ability to co-produce and co-develop critical technologies, the official added, “at a certain point in time, there is a strategic choice that needs to be made about platforms and systems, and our – certainly, we are encouraging India to look at our platforms and our systems as the most efficacious as it’s facing challenges in the Indo-Pacific region.”

    India had also signed two US foundational agreements – the Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA) and the Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement (COMCASA) – in 2016 and 2018, respectively.

    Russia will fulfil its contract to deliver S-400 missile systems to India in 2025 as it has already received the first advance payment, Rostec State Corporation CEO Sergey Chemezov said in November 2019.



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    Washington, US, Russia, CAATSA, air defence system, S-400, India
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