Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Days after accusing it of ‘espionage’, Russia suspends delivery of S-400 missile systems to China

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Amidst 'espionage' allegations, Russia suspends S-400 missile systems delivery to China

— Consider reading the article Days after accusing it of ‘espionage’, Russia suspends delivery of S-400 missile systems to China on OpIndia website —

Russia has reportedly suspended the delivery of S-400 ‘Triumf’ surface-to-air missile systems to China. The development comes at the backdrop of recent accusations of ‘espionage’ made by Russia against the Communist-ruled country. As per the report, the resumption of future deliveries is yet to be announced.

As per reports, the S-400 ‘Triumf’ surface-to-air missile systems are highly advanced defence systems and are capable of hitting the target at a height of up to 30 kilometers and a distance of 400 kilometres. Reportedly, China had received the first batch of the said missile systems in 2018. UAWire in its report noted, “This time, Russia announced the postponement of the delivery of missiles for the Chinese S-400 system. To a certain extent, we can say that it is for the sake of China. Getting a gun is not as easy as signing an invoice after receiving a weapon.”

Reportedly, the Chinese government has, however, viewed the setback as a positive move. According to Chinese newspaper Sohu, China is of the belief that the delivery of missile systems at this point in time would have gravely affected the ‘anti-pandemic efforts’ made by the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and, in turn, create troubles for the country. Sohu informed that using the defence systems was complicated. It reported that while China had sent its personnel to Russia for training, the Russian government is yet to send technicians to put the missile systems to service.

Espionage accusations against China

However, in spite of good relations between the two countries, Russia had accused one of its leading Arctic researcher, Valery Mitko, of spying at the behest of China. Mitko was the President of the Arctic Academy of Sciences in St. Petersburg. Reportedly, he had handed over a document containing ‘state secrets’ to the Chinese authorities in 2018 when serving as a visiting professor at Dalian Maritime University in China.

The 78-year-Mitko has however rubbished the allegations by claiming that the information brought by him from Russia to the Chinese university was available in the public domain. Reportedly, the said document contained information about underwater communications, navigation and monitoring of submarines.

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