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Russian Deputy PM admits ‘strange flaws’ in construction of Kalashnikov plant in Venezuela

December 16, 2014, 8:32 UTC+3 CARACAS
The factory is expected to assemble about 25,000 Kalashnikov automatic assault rifles annually
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Venezuelan soldiers carrying Russian Kalashnikov AK-103 rifles

Venezuelan soldiers carrying Russian Kalashnikov AK-103 rifles

© EPA/CHICO SANCHEZ

CARACAS, December 16. /TASS/. Strange inconsistencies have occurred in the construction of a factory that is supposed to do licensed assembly of Kalashnikov assault rifles in Venezuela, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said on Monday after talks with Venezuelan Foreign Minister Rafael Ramirez.

Cooperation in defense-related technologies was one of the items on the agenda of their negotiations as co-chairpersons of the Russian-Venezuelan high-level commission.

As he answered a question by TASS, Rogozin said it was yet to be established why the current contractor had received the contract for building the factory.

“The general contractor will be changed and the deadline for completing the construction works has been put off to the end of 2015,” he said.

Russia and Venezuela will set up a mechanism of tough control over how their bilateral decisions are fulfilled, Rogozin said.

“Our Venezuelan partners and I made an arrangement to set up a mechanism of tough control over how bilateral agreements are fulfilled,” he wrote in his microblog.

The two countries signed an agreement on building a factory for assembling the Kalashnikov guns of series 100 in Venezuela in July 2006. The document said Venezuelan technology experts and specialists would be trained for a full licensed production cycle of cycle of AK-103 guns.

The factory is expected to assemble about 25,000 Kalashnikov automatic assault rifles annually.

Venezuela has become one of Russia’s main partners in Latin America. Their trade reached a record $2.4 billion last year.

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