India has very clearly conveyed to the US that the “time-tested” India-Russian cooperation in the defence sector will continue, including the deal for S-400Triumf air defence missile systems for the IAF, notwithstanding the American sanctions against Moscow.
“In all our engagements with the US, we have clearly explained how India and Russia’s defence cooperation has been going on for a long time and that it is a time-tested relationship. We have mentioned that CAATSA cannot impact the India-Russia defence cooperation,” defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman said at a press conference.
Her reference to the CAATSA relates to a US federal bill that was implemented in 2017, placing sanctions on Russia, Iran, and North Korea. It is possible that the Trump administration could punish Delhi for violating the sanctions placed on Moscow, as Washington has already issued warnings.
She said India has got quite a lot of defence assets from Russia and the cooperation between the two countries will continue.
In January, the US announced sanctions against Russia under its Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) for Moscow’s alleged meddling in the American presidential election in 2016.
CAATSA, which came into effect in January, mandates the Donald Trump administration to punish countries and entities engaging in significant transaction with the defence or intelligence establishment of Russia.
Asked whether India will go ahead with the S-400 deal with Russia, the defence minister said the long-drawn negotiations relating to it have reached final stage.
“The S-400 deal has been on for a very long time and we have reached the final stage of negotiations. That explains it,” she said.
India wants to procure the long-range missile systems to tighten its air defence mechanism, particularly along the nearly 4,000-km-long China-India border.
Official sources said both Russia and India are likely to announce the deal before an annual summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin in October.
There have been mounting concerns in India over the US sanctions against Russian defence majors including Rosoboronexport as billions of dollars of military purchases may be impacted because of the punitive measure.
“It must be noted that S-400 is an advanced weapon system and it is virtually impossible for India to procure a comparable system from any other country. However, the bottom line is that some discernible shifts are there in the Indian foreign policy lately – one may say, a rethink or a course correction,” Bhadrakumar said.
The move to purchase S-400 is also meant to send a message to the US that no one can press the country into buying or not buying certain military equipment, Aleksey Kupriyanov, senior research fellow at Institute of World Economy and International Relations, believes.
“India strives to maintain a balance in arms purchases, to not buy too much from the US or Russia. S-400 fits perfectly into such scheme, as it allows it to fix the quite recent tilt towards the American weaponry,” Kupriyanov told RT
About the “S-400 Triumf”
The S-400 Triumf ( NATO reporting name: SA-21 Growler), previously known as the S-300PMU-3, is an anti-aircraft weapon system developed in the 1990s by Russia’s Almaz Central Design Bureau as an upgrade of the S-300 family. It has been in service with the Russian Armed Forces since 2007. The S-400 uses four missiles to fill its performance envelope: the very-long-range 40N6 (400 km), the long-range 48N6 (250 km), the medium-range 9M96E2 (120 km) and the short-range 9M96E (40 km). The S-400 was described by The Economist in 2017 as “one of the best air-defence systems currently made.”
|Max. target speed||4.8 kilometres per second (17,000 km/h; 11,000 mph; Mach 14)|
|Target detection distance (km)||600|
|Range against aerodynamic target (km)
|Altitude limits for aerodynamic target (2015, km)
||27(easily)/30, 56 (9m96e2), up to 185 km (40Н6Е)
|Range against tactical ballistic targets (km)
|The number of simultaneously engaged targets (full cast WRU)||80 earlier in stage of development was 36 (2012)|
|The number of simultaneously guided missiles (full cast give target designation)||160 can use 2 missile to attack 1 target|
|Ready for operation on a signal while driving on the march (by the signal strength before the start fight) (min)||5 in the development stage been 10–15|
|Ready for operation on a signal from standby (min)||ready and enabled 0,6 / ready 3|
|Time between major overhauls (h)||10000|
|Service life (years)
||At least 20
Types of targets:
- Strategic bombers such as the B-1, B-2, FB-111 and B-52H
- Electronic warfare airplanes such as the EF-111A and EA-6
- Reconnaissance airplanes such as the TR-1
- Early-warning radar airplanes such as the E-3A and E-2C
- Fighter airplanes such as the F-15, F-16, F-35 and F-22
- Strategic cruise missiles such as the Tomahawk
- Ballistic missiles (range up to 3,500 km)
- All-purpose maximum radial velocity is 4.8 kilometres per second (17,000 km/h; 11,000 mph; Mach 14); absolute limit 5 kilometres per second (18,000 km/h; 11,000 mph; Mach 15), the minimum is zero.
- System response time less than 10 seconds.
- The complex can move on roads (60 km/h) and off-road (ground) at speeds up to 25 km/h.
- According to the Pravda.ru newspaper article, the price of one battalion (about 7–8 launchers) is $200 million.
- Practical probability of success 83,3% (for 1 missile, not 2). One day overcome 1500 km (railway transport), occupied position. Destroyed 10 targets, applied 12 missiles. Targets were at extra high and super low height.
About CAATSA(Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act) :
The Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, CAATSA, is a United States federal law that imposed sanctions on Iran, North Korea, and Russia. The bill was passed during the 115th Congress, 98–2 in the Senate. On August 2, 2017, President Donald Trump signed it into law while issuing two statements simultaneously that he believed the legislation was “seriously flawed”
Countering Iran’s Destabilizing Activities Act of 2017
- This bill directs the President to impose sanctions against: (1) Iran’s ballistic missile or weapons of mass destruction programs, (2) the sale or transfer to Iran of military equipment or the provision of related technical or financial assistance, and (3) Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and affiliated foreign persons.
- The President may impose sanctions against persons responsible for violations of internationally recognized human rights committed against individuals in Iran.
- The President may temporarily waive the imposition or continuation of sanctions under specified circumstances.
Countering Russian Influence in Europe and Eurasia Act of 2017
- The President must submit for congressional review certain proposed actions to terminate or waive sanctions with respect to the Russian Federation.
- Specified executive order sanctions against Russia shall remain in effect.
- The President may waive specified cyber- and Ukraine-related sanctions.
- The bill provides sanctions for activities concerning: (1) cyber security, (2) crude oil projects, (3) financial institutions, (4) corruption, (5) human rights abuses, (6) evasion of sanctions, (7) transactions with Russian defense or intelligence sectors, (8) export pipelines, (9) privatization of state-owned assets by government officials, and (10) arms transfers to Syria.
- The Department of State shall work with the government of Ukraine to increase Ukraine’s energy security.
- The bill: (1) directs the Department of the Treasury to develop a national strategy for combating the financing of terrorism, and (2) includes the Secretary of the Treasury on the National Security Council.
Korean Interdiction and Modernization of Sanctions Act
- The bill modifies and increases the President’s authority to impose sanctions on persons in violation of certain United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding North Korea.
- U.S. financial institutions shall not establish or maintain correspondent accounts used by foreign financial institutions to provide indirect financial services to North Korea.
- A foreign government that provides to or receives from North Korea a defense article or service is prohibited from receiving certain types of U.S. foreign assistance.
- The bill provides sanctions against: (1) North Korean cargo and shipping, (2) goods produced in whole or part by North Korean convict or forced labor, and (3) foreign persons that employ North Korean forced laborers.
- The State Department shall submit a determination regarding whether North Korea meets the criteria for designation as a state sponsor of terrorism.
Regarding Russia, Section 241 of the Act required that “not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Director of National Intelligence and the Secretary of State” submit to Congress a detailed report — with the option of containing a classified annex — that would include “identification of the most significant senior foreign political figures and oligarchs in the Russian Federation, as determined by their closeness to the Russian regime and their net worth” as well as an assessment of the relationship between such individuals and ″President Vladimir Putin or other members of the Russian ruling elite″