Europe Greece to buy new Russian arms, defense minister says

Greece to buy new Russian arms, defense minister says

 Greek Defense Minister Panos Kammenos
Greek Defense Minister Panos Kammenos

(AA) – Greece will continue to purchase new Russian arms, Greek Defense Minister Panos Kammenos said Wednesday during a visit to Moscow.   

“We will promote the maintenance of weaponry systems, such as Tor-M1, Kornet and S-300, which we have already bought,” Kammenos said, according to the state-run Russian media, Sputnik.

The minister said Greece would continue military and technical cooperation with Russia, but arms purchase would be limited to replacement of old weapons.

Kammenos added that Athens and Moscow “could continue with other agreements” if European Union sanctions against Russia end soon.

Last month, 20 EU leaders decided to maintain sanctions on Russia, set to expire in July, until the Minsk Agreement is fully implemented.

NATO member Greece owns the Russian-made S-300 air defense system.

The system, completed in 1978, is designed to defend against short and medium-range air attacks and is considered one the world’s most powerful air defense systems.

S-300s were initially developed for use against aircraft, but are now capable of defending against ballistic missiles.

The system is capable of simultaneously tracking 100 targets on radar, locking on to up to six targets at a time and can launch up to 12 rockets. 

The S-300 system is used in Russia and a number of other countries around the world, including China, Venezuela, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Ukraine, Slovakia, Vietnam and Greece.