ASTANA, January 31 (RIA Novosti) – Russia is set to supply fellow former Soviet nation Kazakhstan with S-300 air defense systems free-of-charge, a top Russian military official said Friday.
Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov, who was part of a military delegation traveling to the Central Asian state, said five battalions of S-300PS systems would be supplied from the arsenals of the Russian army.
Delivery of the systems will improve protection of Kazakhstan’s airspace as well as strengthen the air defense network of the Moscow-led Collective Security Treaty Organization military alliance, Antonov said.
The S-300PS (SA-10 Grumble) model was introduced to Soviet armed forces in 1985. It features 5V55R missiles with an engagement range of up to 90 kilometers (56 miles) and designed to lock in on a target after launch using an active detection system that steers the missile directly at the target. An S-300 battalion comprises up to six mobile launchers, according to estimates by military experts.
Kazakhstan reportedly has several S-300 systems deployed, mainly around the capital, Astana.
Moscow signed an agreement to set up an integrated regional air defense network with Kazakhstan last year. Russia has such a network with Belarus, while a similar deal with Armenia has been in the works for some time.