Russia to deliver 3 combat helicopters to Peru next week

The Peruvian Air Force will receive next week three Russian combat helicopters intended for military operations against drugs trafficking and terrorism, Peru’s defense minister said.

Last July, the Peruvian Defense Ministry and Russian state-controlled arms exporter Rosoboronexport signed a contract for the sale of six Mi-171Sh Hip transport and two Mi-35P Hind E attack helicopters to the South American country. The deal is estimated at $107.9 million.

« Three Russian c helicopters will be delivered to Peru on May 9 and 10 and then sent to fight illegal drugs trafficking in the Valley of the Apurimac and Ene River, » Defense Minister Jaime Thorne said.

The minister added that Peru « hopes to fulfill the contract with Russia by the end of the year and receive the remaining three helicopters. »

Last month Russia delivered to Peru two Mi-35P Hind E attack helicopters.

Peru is one of South America’s main cocaine producers along with Bolivia and Columbia. The Valley of the Apurimac and Ene River was declared a zone of military operations in August 2009 as fighting between the government troops and the Shining Path Maoist guerilla group intensified.

Shining Path is believed to have strong ties with drug traffickers. The group is on the U.S. and European Union lists of terrorist organizations.

MEXICO, May 3 (RIA Novosti)

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