PARIS, August 29 (RIA Novosti)
- Russian Shipyard Starts Metal Cutting for Mistral
- Mistral Warships for Russia to Get Russian Weaponry
- Russian Navy to Receive Mistral Warship in 3 Years
- France Ready to Recognize Syrian Opposition Govt.
- Russia Blames West for Fueling Armed Conflict in Syria
France will not use a $1.2 billion contract to build Mistral class amphibious assault ships for the Russian Navy to put pressure on Moscow over the Syrian issue, the country’s foreign minister said on Wednesday.
The West is pushing for President Bashar al-Assad’s ouster, while Russia and China are trying to prevent outside interference in Syria, saying the Assad regime and the opposition are both to blame for the bloodshed. Russia and China have blocked three UN resolutions on Syria.
In an interview with the France Inter radio station, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said his country “is putting pressure on Russia only in the diplomatic dimension.”
"We continue negotiations with Russians, we must find a solution [on Syria]. To achieve some progress, we discuss it in parallel with the Arab states, with our neighbors and the Russians,” he said.
He also said that French military equipment must not be sold to third states.
“If we learn about reselling, we will end all future supplies,” Fabius said.
Russia and France signed the contract for two French-built Mistral class ships, including the transfer of sensitive technology, in June 2011. Two more ships are expected to be 80% built in Russia, 20% in France.
The first Mistral class warship is expected to be put in service with the Russian Navy in three years.
A Mistral-class ship is capable of carrying 16 helicopters, four landing vessels, 70 armored vehicles, and 450 personnel.
The Russian military has said it plans to use Mistral ships in its Northern and Pacific fleets.
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- lmStupid to go aboard for aircraft and military hardware.15:58, 29/08/2012Not now France later stick it into Russia's face because they never learn their lesson.
We all here knew it would come down to this Russia has to sellout sooner or later Assad because of their stupid foreign policy.
This was bound to come to light because of Russia’s stupid decision to go aboard for hardware they knew what happened to many countries that did not toe the West line.