India risks U.S. sanctions by purchasing Russian missiles

India has signed a $5 billion deal to purchase surface-to-air missile systems from Russia despite the threat of U.S. sanctions.

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a $5 billion deal to sell missile systems to India. India could be at risk of U.S. sanctions. Photo by Alexei Druzhinin/Kremline Pool/EPA
Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a $5 billion deal to sell missile systems to India. India could be at risk of U.S. sanctions. Photo by Alexei Druzhinin/Kremline Pool/EPA

Indian officials say the missiles provide increased defensive capabilities that will deter China’s larger and more superior military. The five S-400 Triumf missile systems are capable of shooting down aircraft and other missiles.
Russian President Vladimir Putin went to New Delhi to sign the deal.

This comes one month after the U.S. imposed Countering America’s Adversaries through Sanctions Act on China’s military for buying fighter jets and S-400 missile systems from Russia.

India will seek a waiver from President Donald Trump because the missiles counter Chinese aggression.

“If they choose to go down that route, like I said, I can’t sit here and tell you that the waiver will necessarily be used,” Randall Schriver, the U.S. secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific security affairs, said in August.

India also plans to purchase four warships from Russia, a deal that’s worth $2.5 billion.

ByNicholas Sakelaris