RealNews

Indian forces get foothold in Central Asia

Quietly, very quietly, India is preparing to deploy at least one squadron of Mi-17 helicopters at the Ayni airbase in Tajikistan. This will be its ‘first real military outpost’ on foreign shores and give New Delhi ‘strategic reach’ in energy-rich Central Asia. The ‘immediate’ plan may well be to deploy Mi-17 helicopters, as well as some Kiran trainer aircraft to train Tajik pilots, at the airbase before the end of this year. But sources confirmed that this was just the prelude to ‘a larger strategic imprint’ in the region, which India sees as crucial to its growing energy needs. The ‘eventual aim’ is to station even MiG-29 fighter jets at the airbase. Full Story

OODA Analyst

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