13:45 GMT +317 November 2019
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    The STX Europe shipyard in Saint-Nazaire

    Dismantling of Russian-Made Equipment From Mistrals Underway

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    Deal Cancelled: What Will Paris Do With Russia's Mistrals? (57)

    A Russian team has begun to dismantle telecommunications and control systems from the Mistral helicopter carriers docked at a shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, a French daily reported. The process is expected to last until October.

    Approximately ten Russian experts arrived in France last week, Ouest France noted.

    The move is part of an agreement to terminate the $1.3 billion contract inked in 2011. Under the arms deal, France was supposed to deliver two amphibious assault ships to the Russian Navy. The delivery was later put on hold following Moscow's alleged involvement in the Ukrainian civil war.

    France has already transferred the compensation for the helicopter carriers and is trying to sell them to a third party. When or if a potential buyer appears, Paris will have to discuss the matter with Russia since Moscow has power to veto such a transaction.

    Several countries, including Brazil, Egypt, India, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Vietnam and the United Arab Emirates, are said to be interested in purchasing the amphibious assault ships. The buyer, according to unconfirmed reports, will also be offered to buy Russian-made Kamov Ka-52K helicopters specifically tailored for the Mistrals.

    Earlier, in August, a source told RIA Novosti that the equipment unloaded from the Mistrals could be later used on other Russian vessels.

    Deal Cancelled: What Will Paris Do With Russia's Mistrals? (57)


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    France, military equipment, amphibious assault ship, helicopter carrier, Mistral, Russia
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