Russia to buy range of new army vehicles

Bronnitsy (Russia), May 28 (IANS/RIA Novosti) The Russian defence ministry is to purchase a range of new vehicles, Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu announced Tuesday during a visit to a military test center.

"We have decided to start the serial purchase of a range of vehicles... we need the most mobile and modern vehicles for transporting our forces and supplies to areas of military activity," Shoigu said at a defence ministry test center in the Moscow region, where he watched a display of Russian-made military vehicles and equipment.

He did not specify which vehicles would be purchased, in what numbers, or when.

The demonstration featured the Typhoon-U and Typhoon-K six-wheel transporters, Bulava and Bulat vehicles, Volk 1 (VPK-3927) and Volk 2 multirole wheeled vehicles, and the Rys and Tigr-M armored jeeps, as well as Vityaz twin-compartment tracked vehicles for use in harsh climatic conditions.

The Vityaz was a focal point on the show, during which it crossed a water-filled ditch and then climbed a plus-30 degree slope.

In January, Ground Forces commander Vladimir Chirkin said the defence ministry would buy Russian-made Tigr vehicles in preference to a follow-on order for Italian Lynx jeeps made under license in Russia.

Russia and Italy signed a contract in December 2011 for the production of Iveco Rys/Lynx vehicles under license in Russia.

Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin, who is responsible for the defence industry, has conducted a policy of buying some foreign military equipment where Russian technology is lagging behind, or where the domestic industry can gain know-how, while generally preferring to buy from local suppliers.

--IANS/RIA Novosti

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