Russia will fulfill a contract to deliver 21 helicopters to Afghanistan in the first half of the year, the Federal Military-Technical Cooperation Service said on Wednesday.
Last May, the United States signed a $367.5 million contract with Russia to buy 21 Mi-17V5 military transport helicopters for the Afghan army.
By December 30, 2011, nine helicopters were delivered to Afghanistan. They are currently being assembly and tested for flightworthiness.
“The remaining 12 Mi-17V-5 helicopters and related equipment will be delivered during the first half of 2012,” the service said.
The Mi-17 is an export version of the Mi-8 Hip helicopter. It features powerful turboshaft engines and can transport up to 35 people.
The Mi-17V5 version is equipped with a loading ramp instead of the clam-shell doors, an additional door and a new “dolphin nose”.