Pentagon Ditching Russian Helicopter Deal Could Complicate Situation in Afghanistan

Plans to buy 15 Russian Mi-17 transport helicopters for the Afghan forces scrapped


The Pentagon's decision to scrap plans for buying 15 more Russian-built helicopters for the Afghan National Security Forces could complicate the path forward for Afghanistan.

The Mi-17 transport helicopters, supplied by the Russian arms dealer Rosoboronexport, have been under congressional fire because of the Russian firm's role in supplying weapons to Syrian President Bashar Assad in his civil war. Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) in particular pushed for the Pentagon to stop buying from Rosoboronexport.