Kamis, 30 November 2006

Military to Buy 6 More Sukhois

The Jakarta Post , Jakarta | Wed, 11/29/2006 12:49 PM

MALANG, East Java: Indonesia will buy six more Russian-built Sukhoi jet fighters, Air Force chief Marshall Herman Prayitno said Tuesday.

Herman said the purchase of the Sukhois, of which Indonesia already owns four, was to be made through a US$1 billion loan from Russia that President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono would sign during his trip there this week.

Yudhoyono is scheduled to meet his counterpart Vladimir Putin to finalize the loan.

""The purchase of more Sukhois is aimed at creating a deterrent effect and we do not have any plans to attack other countries. Of course as a sovereign country we want to be strong and respectful,"" Herman said.

Indonesia purchased the first four Sukhois, along with two MI-35 helicopters worth US$192 million in 2003, during Megawati Soekarnoputri's presidency.

The Indonesian Military turned to Russia for arms after the U.S., which supplied 80 percent of Indonesia's weaponry, placed an embargo on the country following the Dili massacre in Timor Leste in 1991. The embargo was lifted fully earlier this year. -- JP

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