Myanmar Received First Two Russian Su-30SMEs: Russia

  • Bureau
  • 04:30 AM, September 12, 2023
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Myanmar Received First Two Russian Su-30SMEs: Russia
Su-30SME fighter

Russia has officially confirmed the transfer of two Su-30SME fighters to Myanmar, months after local media reported their use against armed opposition groups.

Myanmar is the first nation to acquire the Su-30SME aircraft, which is the export version of the Su-30SM fighter.

"Two aircraft have already been delivered," Charlie Than, Myanmar's trade minister, told the Russian RIA state news agency on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum, on Sunday.

Myanmar's top leader, General Min Aung Hlaing, made two visits to Russia in 2022. During his September visit, he met with President Vladimir Putin and toured a fighter jet manufacturing plant.

In September of the same year, Myanmar's State Administrative Council spokesperson, Maj. Gen. Zaw Min Tun, announced Myanmar's impending acquisition of six Russian Su-30SME fighter jets. This purchase stems from a 2018 contract for a total of six aircraft of this model.

Unofficial Russian sources estimate the contract's value at $400 million, excluding aircraft weaponry costs. The contract was financed through a Russian loan, and negotiations on its terms led to implementation delays.

Although there were reports of these planes being used in combat against armed opposition groups, the Myanmar Air Force officially acknowledged them on December 15. The tail numbers of Myanmar's initial Su-30SMEs are "1904" and "1905."

The Sukhoi Su-30SME multi-role fighter jet is designed for tasks including engaging enemy aerial targets, conducting aerial reconnaissance, participating in combat missions, and serving as a platform for pilot training.

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