Islamabad: Pakistan is close to finalise a deal with Russia to buy Mi-35 (Hind E) attack helicopters, a sign of increasing defence ties between the Cold War-era adversaries. The deal is believed to be signed after the conclusion of Army chief General Raheel Sharif’s three-day visit to Moscow. An agreement would be signed ‘very soon’, the Dawn quoted a defence official as saying.
The official, however, avoided disclosing when and where the deal would be inked and how many helicopters were being purchased. Pakistan had been pursuing the helicopter purchase deal since 2009. The two countries had signed a bilateral defence cooperation agreement aimed at strengthening military-to- military relations in November 2014.
The Mi-35 offers round the clock combat use of guided and unguided weapons in regular and challenging climate conditions. Operational for attack flights at altitudes of 10-25 m daytime and 50 m at night over land or water.
For round-the-clock combat use, the Mi-35 is equipped with the latest navigation and avionics suite with multifunction coloured displays, target sights system that includes a thermal imager and TV channels, laser range finder and location finder.