Mar 20, 2014

France: Cancellation of Carrier Sale to Russia an 'Extreme Measure'

France views its two advanced helicopter carriers sold to Russia as unarmed civilian ships, and it is too early to say whether the deal would be canceled in view of the Ukraine crisis.
A cancellation of a contract for two command-and-projection ships of the Mistral class would be an extreme measure, one which would only appear on a third set of sanctions against Moscow.
The first ship, named Vladivostok, is due for delivery at the end of the year.
A defense executive expressed surprise at the description of the Mistral as a civilian hull. The ships will be fitted with a combat system, based on a Senit command-and-control system and radar, covered by the contract.
The second of the carriers under construction for Russia is named Sevastapol. Russia has options for two more Mistral ships.
French Foreign Minister on Monday raised the possibility of canceling the Mistral deal, and said Paris will call on European partners to follow suit.

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