Russian MoD prepares to sue Rhienmetall over simulation deal cancellation
The Russian Ministry of Defence (MoD) is preparing to sue German defence company Rheinmetall over the termination of a contract to supply combat simulation equipment to the Russian Army.
Russian Deputy Defence Minister Yuri Borisov was quoted by RIA Novosti as saying: "Of course, this is all regulated with the conditions of the contract, and of course we will defend our interests.
"I'm not currently acquainted with the details in the contract, but the orders [to launch a court case] have already been given.
"Rheinmetall knows about these risks and it is now working to open the [German] government's eyes to them."
Rhienmetall was contracted to construct a live-combat simulation centre, which is claimed to be capable of training up to 30,000 soldiers annually, in the Russian city of Mulino under a €100m contract awarded in 2011.
The Mulino facility was scheduled to commence operations this year, serving as the Russian Army's primary training grounds.
However, the German Government permanently blocked the deal in the wake of sanctions imposed by the European Union (EU) on Russia over its role in the ongoing Ukraine crisis, including support for pro-Russian insurgents.
Noting that Russia is eligible for reimbursement under the contract terms, Borisov said: "The Mulino centre will not be left without military training. Everything will be equipped."
Russia is now planning to install indigenous hardware at the facility instead of German-built equivalents.
A German Economy Ministry spokesperson had earlier said that Germany is yet to ship most of the combat simulation equipment and has ensured that the incomplete system is not capable of being used by Moscow.
However, Russian lieutenant general Yuriy Petrov said: "At the moment, the entire facility is 95% ready. Tests will start on 1 September."