How does India fool Armenia with expensive, subpar weapons? -ANALYTICS

How does India fool Armenia with expensive, subpar weapons? -ANALYTICS
# 19 March 2024 14:45 (UTC +04:00)

Armenia, which does not accept the new realities in the South Caucasus region, is looking for new patrons and allies. In this context, if the political center that Yerevan refers to the most is France, the country that stands out in terms of military cooperation is India. Armenia, an outsider in the South Caucasus, and its government, which follows a chaotic and inconsistent foreign policy, has chosen India as one of its main military partners. It is no coincidence that in recent years, Armenia has been buying weapons from India, not its traditional partner in the arms market, Russia.

But there is an important point here. Nowadays, India is known more as a buyer than a seller in the world arms market. It is even the first in the world to purchase weapons from abroad. This was reflected in the report on international arms transfers published by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) a few days ago.

According to the report, India was the largest arms importer in the world. The country's arms imports increased by 4.7 percent between 2014-2018 and 2019-2023, and the country has spent more than $60 billion on weapons in the last 20 years.

Defense Minister of the country Rajnath Singh said that they plan to spend up to 100 billion dollars on the purchase of weapons and ammunition.

That is, India, which sells arms to Armenia, itself buys arms from other countries and does not have the critical technologies required to produce missiles, aircraft, and warships. On the contrary, when buying weapons, it also tries to acquire the technologies used to make them. For example, in 2023, an agreement was reached with the US General Electric company to produce engines for this country's fighter planes in India.

In addition, India is considering buying fighter jets from France for its newest aircraft carrier and is also looking to build submarines using French, German, or Spanish technology and fighter jets powered by French engines with the United States.

Another interesting point is the fact that India is the largest buyer of Russian weapons. Thus, 65% of the weapons arsenal of the Indian army are weapons purchased from Russia. "BrahMos" missiles, presented as a success of the Indian military industry, were also developed based on technologies transferred by Russia within the framework of military-technical cooperation.

"BrahMos" missiles, which Armenia is also interested in buying, are made based on Russian "Onyx" missiles, or "Pinaka" rocket launcher systems, which the official Yerevan recently bought from India, are produced based on the technology of the Russian "Smerch" system. "Konkurs" anti-tank missiles purchased from India were also developed based on a patent issued by Russia.

Thus, the quality and accuracy of most of the experimental weapons sold by India to Armenia - "Akash" air defense complex, "ATAGS" howitzers, and "MArG 155" self-propelled howitzers - are under serious question. The interesting thing is that India sees Armenia as a testing ground for these weapons and equipment.

On the other hand, Armenia, which for many years as a member of the CSTO has received domestic market prices as well as free weapons from its new military-political partner India, receives weapons at a high price and without any quality assurance.

At this point, it is appropriate to mention the opinions of the former defense minister of Armenia, Arshak Karapetyan, in an interview with the local press these days. Karapetyan criticized the military-technical policy of the current government and said that the weapons purchased from India have been in Armenia for a year, but these weapons are in a useless condition. "I have a document in my hand that it has been impossible to repair Indian weapons and make them ready for service for a year," the former minister said.

India is selling useless and low-quality weapons and equipment to Armenia at the cost of millions. Official Delhi uses Armenia only as a tool to advertise its weapons and gain the status of a major arms exporter. Of course, Indians do not forget their financial interests in addition to advertising.

Azerbaijan carefully monitors these arms deals with Armenia and takes countermeasures accordingly. The modern missile systems in the arsenal of the Azerbaijani Army allow to destruction of all the weapons sold by India to Armenia in a short time and with high accuracy.