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Tajikistan Getting Helicopters From India; Kyrgyzstan Air Defense From China

An Afghan Mi-17 helicopter, the same type India is reportedly giving to Tajikistan. (photo: U.S. Army)

India will give two military transportation helicopters to Tajikistan when its defense minister visits Dushanbe in July, Indian press is reporting. During his visit next month, A K Antony also will inaugurate a military hospital in Farkhor in southern Tajikistan, according to a report from the Press Trust of India.

I asked a well-connected Indian defense journalist about this and he said his sources confirmed the report, and that the helicopters in question would be two Mi-17s. The plan to give them to Tajikistan had been made some time ago, but India's requirements for UN peacekeeping and for fighting the Naxal rebellion in India meant that there were no spare aircraft until now, the source tells The Bug Pit.

Separately, another news item also speaks to how Central Asia's militaries are looking to new sources for hardware: Kyrgyzstan is reportedly acquiring air defense systems from China. From CentrAsia.ru:

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Tajikistan Getting Helicopters From India; Kyrgyzstan Air Defense From China

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