Why are key US allies preferring Russian S-400 Air Defence System over the American Patriot Missiles? According to latest reports, after Turkey and India, Saudi Arabia says negotiations over the purchase of Russian S-400 Air Defence System are advancing well and nearing conclusion.
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According to the Saudi ambassador to Russia, “We signed the contract during the King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud’s visit. Now we are implementing the technical details of technology transfers and other technical discussions between the two sides”.
Riyadh has repeatedly boasted to have intercepted hostile missiles fired from Yemen, but many reports have suggested the failure of US-made Patriot missile system.
S-400 Air Defence System
Earlier, as reported by EurAsian Times, talks between Russian President Vladimir Putin and King of Saudi Arabia Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud were held in the Kremlin gave an impetus of the evolving ties between Moscow and Riyadh. That time, both the leaders stated their desire to develop mutually beneficial partnership not only in the field of the economy but also in the defence sector.
During the first visit of the Saudi King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud to Russia, the intention of Riyadh became evident to acquire the advanced Russian S-400 Triumph anti-aircraft missile system.
US Patriot systems have been in existence since the 1990s in Saudi Arabia. The Saudis place huge contracts every year and they actually buy weapons in excess. The weapons are placed directly to the storage and parking bases), as Saudi Arabia does not even have trained personnel to use it. However, according to various media reports and claims by international experts, the Yemen War has exposed the limitations of Patriot missile system.
The same opinion was earlier shared by the editor-in-chief of the National Defense magazine Igor Korotchenko. He clarified that Moscow does not have strong military-technical cooperation with Riyadh. “A few years ago, the Saudis agreed to place big contracts to Russia, motivating them to consider freezing the supply of S-300’s to Iran.” We remember that the contract was frozen and the Saudis did not eventually place the order.
This time, however, Saudi Arabia looks serious to acquire the advanced Russian S-400 Air Defence System. As stated by the kingdom’s Ambassador to Moscow – Rayed Krimly, both the sides are working on technical details and are on the verge of closing the S-400 deal.