Rosoboronexport chief Alexander Mikheev. Source: Rostec.
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  • The head of Russia’s state arms exporter says Moscow is cooperating closely with Myanmar’s junta, supplying it with weapons and other equipment
  • Myanmar is one of Rosoboronexport’s main clients in southeast Asia and a key partner of Rostec, Russia’s state aerospace and defence conglomerate
  • The relationship has been criticised by rights activists, who see Russia’s actions as legitimising the February 1 coup
  • In recent years, Russia has provided military training and university scholarships to thousands of soldiers in Myanmar

The head of Russia’s state arms exporter said on Wednesday that Moscow was cooperating closely with Myanmar’s ruling junta, supplying it with weapons, vehicles and other military equipment.

The relationship has drawn the ire of rights activists, who have accused Russia of legitimising the junta that seized power in a coup on February 1 by continuing bilateral visits and arms deals.

“There is close cooperation between us on the supply of military products, including aircraft,” Alexander Mikheev, the head of Rosoboronexport, said at the annual MAKS air show on Tuesday.

He described Myanmar as one of the agency’s main clients in southeast Asia and a key partner of Rostec, Russia’s state aerospace and defence conglomerate.

During a visit to Moscow last month, Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu told Myanmar’s junta leader Senior General Min Aung Hlaing ¬†that the country was committed to strengthening military ties.

The relationship has grown in recent years, with Russia providing military training and university scholarships to thousands of soldiers, as well as selling arms to a military already blacklisted by a number of Western nations.

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