06:24 GMT20 January 2021
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    Deal Cancelled: What Will Paris Do With Russia's Mistrals? (57)

    According to a high-ranking source, France has returned Russia all the money for the Mistrals.

    ZHUKOVSKY (Sputnik) — France has transferred around 900 million euro ($1 billion) to Russia for terminating the contract to deliver two Mistral-class helicopter carriers, a high-ranking source in Russia's Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation said Thursday.

    "France has returned Russia all the money for the Mistrals, around 900 million euro. Russia had directly paid 800 million euro for the Mistrals at the time of the contract termination," the official told RIA Novosti.

    On Wednesday, French government spokesman Stephan Le Foll said the amount of compensation paid to Russia for terminating the contract on the delivery of two Mistral-class helicopter carriers by France would not exceed 1 billion euro.

    Russia has yet to allow France to re-export two Mistral-class helicopter carriers to third countries, according to the source.

    "Despite the fact that France has transferred all the funds for failing to deliver the Mistrals, around 900 million euro, France has not yet been given permission by Russia to re-export these ships," the source said.

    Under the 1.2 billion euro ($1.37 billion at current exchange rates) contract signed in 2011, France agreed to sell two Mistral-class helicopter carriers to Russia.

    In November 2014, France put the delivery on hold as a punitive measure in response to allegations that Russia was interfering in the Ukrainian crisis. Moscow has consistently denied the accusations.

    On August 5, Paris and Moscow terminated the contract for delivery of the Mistrals. France promised to reimburse Russia the entire sum it paid for the ships, while French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian later said that the refund would amount to less than the original price.

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


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