Iran has finalized arrangements for the delivery of Russian made Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jets and Mil Mi-28 attack choppers, Deputy Defense Minister Brigadier General Mehdi Farahi confirmed as Tehran and Moscow forge closer military relations.
Brigadier General Farahi told Tasnim news agency that plans have been finalized for Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jets, Mil Mi-28 attack helicopters and Yak-130 jet trainers to join the combat units of Iran’s Army, Fars News Agency (FNA) reported.
The three advanced military aircraft “will definitely arrive in Iran and the process of their delivery is currently under way,” he added.
He further stressed that Tehran has the strongest fleet of military helicopters in the region in terms of quantity and has upgraded the capabilities of its choppers after several projects.
“In the field of helicopters, we have good capabilities; that is why we are the best in the region in terms of quantity, but the qualitative improvement of helicopters is on the agenda,” the military official continued.
Back in late May, Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Ashtiani asserted that there is no ban on Iran for buying defense equipment.
The Defense Minister also stressed that Tehran “has no restriction” on exporting military equipment to other countries, adding that Iran will help any country that remains committed to international peace.
Iran has not acquired any new military aircraft in recent years, excluding a few Russian MiG-29 Fulcrum fighters it bought in the 1990s. Besides the MiG-29, IRIAF mainly uses locally modified F-4 Phantom II, F-14 Tomcat, and F-5E/F Tiger II planes from the 1970s.
Iran and Russia have embarked on deepening cooperation amid massive Western sanctions. Tehran and Moscow have recently signed major agreements to boost economic, trade, energy and military collaboration.
Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Hossein Baqeri announced in September that Tehran and Moscow were working to draw up a long-term military cooperation agreement in the near future as the world was moving towards an increasingly multipolar order, which stressed the need for enhancement of ties between the two countries.
Baqeri emphasized the need for collaboration in training, exchange of cadets as well as staging joint military exercises. (FARS; Tasnim; Caption: Mi-28NE is a round-the-clock operational attack helicopter with a range of smart weaponry including the VIKHR ATGM by the KBP/HPW. Photo at the ARMY-2023 by LAGUK-Media)