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Putin’s meetings on state defence contracts to upgrade army’s capability

November 27, 2013, 19:22 UTC+3 SOCHI

Presidential spokesperson reminds Putin had started the complex process of rearming the Armed Forces despite the crisis of 2008-2009

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© ITAR-TASS/Vladimir Smirnov

SOCHI, November 27, 18:31 /ITAR-TASS/. President Vladimir Putin’s plans to hold a series of meetings on state defense contracts signify no growing risks but the need for the Russian Armed Forces to be able to respond to the call of the times, presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Wednesday, November 27.

When asked whether these meetings and surprise military exercises were connected with some increased foreign policy risks, Peskov said, “Not at all.”

He recalled that when Putin was prime minister, he had started the complex process of rearming the Armed Forces despite the crisis of 2008-2009. “Any country, especially one like Russia, bears responsibility and plays one of the main roles in ensuring mutual deterrence and strategic security, and it should maintain its Armed Forces and related industries up to date,” the spokesperson said.

Sooner or later weapons have to be replaced with new ones. “This is precisely what Putin is doing. These 23 trillion rubles [allocated for the modernization of the Army and Navy] - let’s say, whether it will remain unchanged or it will be cut or maybe increased, and how the money will be used - none of this indicates that we are preparing for something. This only indicates that we intend not only to bring our army’s capabilities in line with present-day requirements, but as Putin said, ‘make projections for the future’,” Peskov said.

He stressed that no radical changes in funding for army modernization were planned. “The very fact of such meetings suggests that this process is not reversible. Corrections are possible but the process itself is beyond doubt,” the spokesperson said.

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