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Moscow is evidently very interested in expanding arms cooperation with Serbia. Russia is taking part in the international defense exhibition Partner-2021, which will take place from October 11th to 14th at the Belgrade Exhibition Center. The Russian National Pavilion is organized by Rosoboronexport, the Russian arms trading broker and subsidiary of the Rostec Corporation.

As a constant buyer of Russian defense products, including MiG-29M fighter jets, Mi-8/17 family helicopters and Pantsir-S1 SPAAG, Serbia remains one of Russia's few European partners on a military level.

Rosoboronexport is also sending a high-level delegation around Alexander Mikheev, the company's CEO, who expressed his confidence in the importance of Partner-2021 for bilateral military-technical cooperation, which has grown significantly over the past 15 years.

“The scope and range of topics of our cooperation now clearly stand out on the European market and show a steady growth trend. We are working on topics that are relevant for all services and branches of arms in the context of direct product deliveries, industrial partnerships, cooperations, also in the interests of third countries, as well as the import of Serbian products to Russia, ”said Mikheev.

A wide variety of weapons will be presented at the exhibition, from the Viking surface-to-air missile system (SAM) - another derivative of the Buk-M2E - to the Orion-E and Orlan-10E unmanned aerial vehicles, as well as a number of armored vehicles, including the latest Armata family. The remotely controlled 30mm weapon station 32V01 manufactured by Burevestnik and the 57mm automatic weapon station AU-220M have already been installed in the Serbian armored vehicles. Non-lethal systems on display include multiple thermal aiming devices from Argus-NV and Dedal-NV, as well as video and thermal surveillance systems from Stilsoft Group and Polyus-ST.

Russland stärkt Verteidigungsbeziehungen mit Serbien
Russland stärkt Verteidigungsbeziehungen mit Serbien
Russland stärkt Verteidigungsbeziehungen mit Serbien
Serbia could become one of the first customers for the modernized Pantsir-S1M SPAAG system that was presented at the Army 2021 armaments fair. Photo: Yuri Laskin

At the same time, the Russian-Serbian flight tactical exercises began, in which ten aircraft and attack helicopters are involved, including the MiG-29, Mi-8 and Mi-35. The exercises, entitled Bars-2021 (“Snow Leopard”), will be carried out from the Serbian airports of Batajnica and Ladevci. The machines are to be controlled by crews from both countries in order to train combat and emergency operations in groups of two.

It was also announced that the Serbian air defense forces are to use HPW / KBP Pantsir-S1 SPAAG in the upcoming military exercise "Slavic Shield".

Yuri Laskin