Sudan has become the first Arab country to acquire the fourth generation Su-35 fighter jets from Russia
The first batch of jets delivered earlier this month are considered the backbone air superiority fighters for the Russian air force. The UAE signed a similar agreement earlier this year to develop the same jets with Russia.
Sudanese Deputy Air Force Commander, Salahuddin Abdul Khaliq Saeed, announced the deal in March. He told Sputnik news agency that the aircraft will contribute to the consolidation of Sudan’s defenses and will provide it protection from any threat.
The number of fighters delivered, however, was not released.
This delivery came just ahead of President Omar Ahmed al-Bashir’s first visit to Moscow on Thursday.
The three-day visit to Moscow by the Sudanese President included a delegation of senior Ministers and Sudanese officials, to discuss various issues with their Russian counterparts.
During the visit, Sudan has reached an agreement with the Russian Defense Ministry on assistance in upgrading its armed forces, President Omar al-Bashir said at a recent meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Sochi, Russia, TASS news agency reported.
“We’ve had a very good meeting with the Russian defense minister. We are launching a vast program for re-equipping our armed forces. We’ve agreed with the Russian Defense Minister Russia will provide assistance. We would like to increase the presence of Military Attachés,” al-Bashir said.
Sudan finds the situation in the Red Sea worrisome, he remarked.
“We believe that US interference in these affairs is also a problem. We would like to discuss this issue from the standpoint of using bases in the Red Sea,” al-Bashir said.
“Sudan is grateful to Russia for the stance it takes in world affairs”, he added.
“We can underline the great coincidence of positions on most issues,” al-Bashir said. He criticized the United States for interference in the internal affairs of other countries, adding that US intervention was to blame for Sudan’s split into two states.
“As a result we need protection from aggressive actions by the United States. We believe that what is happening in Syria now is an effect of US interference. As a result Syria has seen a catastrophe. We believe that the country would have been lost but for Russia’s role. In that connection we seek cooperation with Russia in various spheres,” al-Bashir said.
In particular, he added, his country was interested in military-technical cooperation with Russia, because the military hardware currently at Sudan’s disposal was of Russian manufacture.
Meanwhile, Russia and Sudan signed an intergovernmental agreement on cooperation in the sphere of peaceful use of nuclear energy, Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom said on Friday.
The document creates a legal basis for interaction between the two countries in peaceful use of nuclear energy across a wide range of areas, such as assistance in creating and developing nuclear infrastructure of Sudan, fundamental and applied research in peaceful use of nuclear energy, production of radioisotopes and their use in industry, healthcare and agriculture, education, training and advance training of specialists for the nuclear sector.