Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu has arrived in Naypyitaw, where he will discuss military and military-technical cooperation with Min Aung Hlaing, Commander-in-Chief of the Myanmar Armed Forces. Russian Defense Ministry Spokesperson Markovskaya told reporters, according to TASS.The sides will discuss the issues of military and military-technical cooperation, as well as the situation in the Asia-Pacific Region. Apart from the supply deal, the two countries signed an agreement on flight safety cooperation.
According to the Russia 24 TV channel, the new agreement was signed in the presence of Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. Russia will supply Myanmar with Pantsir-S1 anti-aircraft missile and gun systems, Orlan-10E surveillance drones and radars. Myanmar is a traditional buyer of Russian arms, and participated in a joint drill with Russia last year. Since the early 2000s, Myanmar has bought Russian-made MiG-29 jet fighters, as well as helicopters, air defense missile systems, artillery, and radars. The countries also currently have a contract on six Su-30 warplanes.
Russia had established diplomatic relations with Myanmar, when it became independent and it remained even today after the fall of the Soviet Union. China and Russia once vetoed a U.N. Security Council resolution designed to punish Myanmar. In recent years, China has shown a lack of willingness to back the Myanmar government and has attempted to stabilize the political situation in Myanmar. In June 2016, the two countries signed a defence cooperation agreement. Min Aung Hlaing and Sergei Shoigu announced their intention to expand military cooperation in a 2018 meeting.