Russia's FSMTC protests Pentagon's supplies of helicopters to Kyiv intended for Afghanistan
MOSCOW. April 27 (Interfax) - The Russian Federal Service for Military and Technical Cooperation (FSMTC) has expressed protest against any illegal transfer to Ukraine or other countries of Russian and Soviet-made weapons and military equipment, including helicopters supplied by Rosoboronexport JSC under a major contract with the Pentagon concluded in 2011.
"This contract and relevant end-user certificates [...] stipulate that these helicopters are intended for transfer by the American side to the Afghan Armed Forces and are not subject to re-export or transfer to any third country, except for the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, without the consent of the Russian Federation," the FSMTC said in a statement released on Wednesday.
Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby earlier announced another package of military assistance to Ukraine, under which 11 Mil Mi-17 helicopters are to be handed over.
"Russia's FSMTC officially says that the fact of equipping the Ukrainian Armed Forces with the said Russian-made helicopters by the American side will be illegal," the statement said.
This U.S. decision "grossly violates the fundamentals of international law and provisions of the Russian-U.S. contractual documents," it said.
"The acknowledgement by Pentagon officials of the U.S. inability to supervise the further transfer of weapons supplied by the Americans to Ukraine, and hence, their uncontrolled transfer to third parties, only aggravates the already exacerbated terrorist threat in the world," the statement said.