By Ria Novosti
Peru intends to buy a consignment of 24 combat helicopters and eyes Russia as one of its potential suppliers along with France and the United States, Peruvian Defense Minister Pedro Cateriano said.
“The purchase of 24 helicopters is currently under the consideration and we have three proposals…, we are considering proposals from France, the United States and Russia,” Cateriano said.
He added that the government of Peru is waiting for a technical and feasibility report from military experts to make a final choice among the three potential suppliers of combat helicopters that Peru intends to use for military operations against drugs trafficking and terrorism.
Last year Russia delivered to Peru two Mi-35P Hind E attack helicopters and six Mi-171Sh Hip transport helicopters.
Peru is one of South America’s main cocaine producers along with Bolivia and Columbia. The Valley of the Apurimac and Ene River was declared a zone of military operations in August 2009 as fighting between the government troops and the Shining Path Maoist guerilla group intensified.
Shining Path is believed to have strong ties with drug traffickers. The group is on the U.S. and European Union lists of terrorist organizations.