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    Russia and Egypt have begun consultations on the purchase and management of a communication system and Ka-52K helicopters for Mistral-type warships, a high-ranking source in the Russian Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation (FSMTC) said on Monday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Earlier in the day, Kremlin chief of staff Sergei Ivanov said Russia would supply equipment and helicopters worth over $1 billion to Egypt for their Mistral helicopter carriers.

    “The negotiations with Egypt took place, consultations with the country are in process. They have expressed a desire to acquire Russian equipment, including helicopters,” the source told RIA Novosti.

    According to the source, it is yet unclear how many helicopters Cairo would acquire.

    Cairo and Paris signed a contract in October for the purchase of two French-made Mistral-class helicopter carriers originally built for Russia.

    Egypt emerged as France’s replacement customer for the Mistrals in September, after Paris and Moscow formally terminated a 2011 deal on construction and delivery of the two ships. In November 2014, France had suspended the contract, citing Moscow's alleged participation in the Ukrainian conflict as a reason to terminate the deal.

    The Russian equipment for the Mistrals is due to be returned to Moscow by November 21.


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