Citing NATO Threat, Russia Speeds Up Arms Race

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Moscow: Russia’s Defense Ministry has announced an increase in future military equipment procurement, citing NATO’s “unfriendly” policies and the Takfiri threat in the region.

According to Press TV, the announced plans included the annual purchase of some 200 planes and helicopters, up to 30 ships and submarines, and around 600 armored vehicles, the UPI reported on Tuesday.

“The state program for armaments extending till 2021 will increase the share of modern weapons and military hardware to no less than 70 percent,” said Chief of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces General Valery Gerasimov during a press briefing in Moscow.

The announcement came as the Russia Defense Ministry voiced concerns over the increase of NATO’s military activities along Russia’s borders, and the increase of global militant terrorism and extremism.

“First of all, the ‪NATO military policy, unfriendly towards Russia, is a matter of concern,” read a Defense Ministry statement, adding, “The alliance expands its military presence and enhances the activity of its armed forces along the borders of the Russian Federation.”

Russia’s announcement comes as NATO-Moscow relations are at their lowest since the Cold War.

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