Russia secretly approached Pakistan, Egypt, Brazil, Syria and Belarus to buy back weapons and helicopters engines it sold past years

A Russian Ka-52 helicopter on the ground after a forced landing outside Kiev, Ukraine. AP Photo

Moscow is ready to buy even decommissioned engines and chase after TV3-117s and its non-licensed copy VK-2500s helicopter engines.

Since the beginning of the invasion, Russia has generally lost the Helicopter and Defense exports – its volume amounted to $8 billion in 2022 against $14.5 billion in 2021.

“In some cases, the Ministry of Defense requisitioned weapons systems even before they left the factories,” the newspaper quoted the source as saying.

This explains the lack of serviceable helicopters and other ammunition for the Grad and Uragan MLRS in Armenia.

Russia is secretly trying buy back military tech that it sold other countries, the WSJ reported.
Several sources told the paper that Egypt agreed to quietly return 150 helicopter engines.

The report comes as Russia ramps up domestic military production for its war in Ukraine.

Russia has approached several countries asking to buy back weapons it sold them, hoping to deploy them in Ukraine, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Secret talks have taken place with Egypt, Belarus, Brazil and Pakistan, the outlet reported, citing unnamed sources with knowledge of the discussions.

Three of those sources told the paper that Egypt agreed to quickly and quietly return 150 helicopter engines. They are expected to be back within a month, the paper reported.

Russia also asked for four engines it sold to Pakistan, six from Belarus, and 12 from Brazil, the outlet reported. While Pakistan denied being approached, two unnamed sources told the outlet that Belarus — a strong ally of Russia — had agreed.

A Brazilian official told the outlet that officials there refused. Insider was unable to independently verify the reports, and the Russian Ministry of Defense did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The reported Egyptian deal follows a flurry of back-and-forth dealmaking as it sought to balance its ties with the US — a longstanding provider of military aid — and its historically warm relations with Russia. Between 2018 and 2022, Egypt was one of Russia’s top three weapons customers, Egypt Independent reported.

A secret deal to send Russia 40,000 rockets was scuppered following US pressure earlier this year, as The Washington Post reported.

That prompted Russia to ask Egypt for the helicopter engines instead, per The Journal. In return, it said Russia will forgive some debts and continue sending shipments of wheat.

The deal would have been enticing, as Egypt has suffered acute problems in its supply of wheat — a massive staple of the Egyptian diet — for several years.

It nonetheless has potential to be politically explosive. Senator Chris Murphy, who serves on the Senate Foreign Relations and Appropriations committees, told The Post that had the rockets deal gone ahead, the US would “need to have a serious reckoning about the state of our relationship.”

The reported attempts to bring military tech back to Russia came at the same time as President Vladimir Putin ramped up domestic production. This has pivoted much of the country’s economy to the war, as Insider’s Katherine Tangalakis-Lippert reported.

Despite a barrage of international sanctions, Russia has still laid its hands on weapons and the parts necessary to build them by exploiting loopholes and its ties to states like North Korea and Syria. In September, Estonia warned that Russia was far outpacing Western nations in making ammunition.

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