India is to finalize a weapons deal to buy Russian-made S-400 missile defense systems reportedly unimpressed by US-made Patriot missile systems’ repeated failures.
India’s Defense Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is visiting Moscow this week for New Delhi and Moscow to put the final touches to the agreement, which buys the latter six anti-aircraft-cum-anti-missile S-400 systems.
The deal, likely to reach $6 billion in worth, comes despite US sanctions against Russia, and heavy United States lobbying to peddle American arms to the subcontinent.
The New York Times reported on Thursday that the deal serves as a blow to the United States’ ”struggling Patriot missile defense system.”
Sold ostentatiously to Saudi Arabia to highlight Riyadh and Washington’s alliance, the Patriot interceptors have been repeatedly failing against counterattacks by Yemen’s Houthi Ansarullah movement amid the Saudi war on the neighboring country.
“The Patriot system has faced recent scrutiny after it failed to protect Saudi Arabia’s capital from missiles fired by Houthi militants in Yemen,” the paper wrote.
“India wasn’t very impressed with the Patriot compared with the S-400, which wins hands-down in capability, in its availability, service availability. It’s a more efficient system,” it cited Rahul Bedi of Jane’s Information Group as saying.
Read more: ‘Unimpressed’ by American Patriot missile system, India turns to Russian S-400