India exports missiles, rockets and ammunition to Armenia as Azerbaijani attacks escalate

Pinaka multi-barrel rocket launchers India Armenia

India will export missiles, rockets and ammunition, including indigenous Pinaka multi-barrel rocket launchers, to Armenia to help defend the nation against Azerbaijan’s ever-increasing attacks against the country.

DefenceIndia signed an order for the arms export through a government-to-government route, through which the two nations inked contracts for the supply of arms and ammunition to Armenia earlier this month, reported The Economic Times on Thursday.

The government has not revealed the value of the contracts, however, according to the report, India will supply weapons worth more several millions over the coming months.

In a first, India will also export indigenous Pinaka multi-barrel rocket launchers. Pinaka has been developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and manufactured by indigenous private sector firms.

Armenia is also set to get anti-tank rockets as well as a range of ammunition from India under the bundled deal, the report stated.

This development comes in a bid to push the government’s efforts to increase weapons exports, with policy reforms and active support of the government to secure overseas orders, reported ET. The Centre has set a target to sell weapon systems worth millions abroad by 2025.

However, this is not the first time India has exported weapons to Armenia. The central government first supplied four Swathi radars to the country in 2020.

The Armenian defense ministry tweeted on Wednesday that Azerbaijani forces had fired towards Armenian positions near the common border using mortars and large-caliber weapons, and that the Armenian side had retaliated.

After border clashes two weeks ago that killed almost 200 soldiers, once again instigated by Azerbaijan, the worst bout of fighting since a six-week war between the two ex-Soviet countries in late 2020, the two sides agreed to a ceasefire deal brokered by Russia.

Armenia said then that Azerbaijan had attacked its territory and seized settlements inside its borders.

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan used his address before the United Nations Thursday to accuse Azerbaijan of “unspeakable atrocities” during the latest clashes between the two rivals, including mutilating the bodies of dead soldiers.

“There are evidences of cases of torture, mutilation of captured or already dead servicemen, numerous instances of extra-judicial killings and ill treatment of Armenian prisoners of war, as well as humiliating treatment of the bodies,” he told the UN General Assembly.

“The dead bodies of Armenian female military personnel were mutilated, and then proudly video recorded with particular cruelty by the Azerbaijani servicemen.”

Pashinyan went on: “No doubt, committing such unspeakable atrocities is a direct result of a decades-long policy of implanting anti-Armenian hatred and animosity in the Azerbaijani society by the political leadership.”

He also accused Azerbaijan of shelling civilian facilities and infrastructure deep inside his country’s territory, displacing more than 7,600 people, as well as leaving three civilians dead and two missing.

“This was not a border clash. It was a direct, undeniable attack against the sovereignty and the territorial integrity of Armenia,” he said.

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