Tuesday, January 25, 2011

DTN News - DEFENSE NEWS: Georgia Worried By French Warship Sale To Russia

DTN News - DEFENSE NEWS: Georgia Worried By French Warship Sale To Russia
*Russia's purchase of French Mistral-class warship
Source: DTN News - - This article compiled by Roger Smith from reliable sources Ria Novosti
(NSI News Source Info) TBILISI, Georgia- January 25, 2011: Georgia is concerned by France's decision to sell Mistral-class assault helicopter carriers to Russia, Deputy Foreign Minister Nino Kalandadze said on Monday.

Russia and France have officially announced they will jointly build two Mistral-class helicopter carriers at the STX shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, France. Another two are planned to be constructed later at the Admiralty Shipyards in St. Petersburg.

An agreement is expected to be signed on Tuesday.

"As you know, we have stated our position on the issue several times while negotiations on this deal were in progress," Kalandadze said.

Georgia and a number of other countries have expressed their concern about the dangers posed by this agreement, she added.

"We hope that both states will take these dangers into account," Kalandadze said.

On Wednesday, Lithuania parliament speaker Irena Degutiene urged the parliaments of North European and Baltic States to discuss the French-Russian deal.

The first Mistral-class ship is expected to be built within 36 months after Russia makes a 720 million euro payment.

A Mistral-class ship is capable of carrying 16 helicopters, four landing vessels, 70 armored vehicles, and 450 personnel.

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