Russian state-run arms exporter Rosoboronexport has agreed to sell AK103 Kalashnikovs for tens of millions of dollars to Bahrain, marking the first deal with the Middle Eastern nation.

Bloomberg has reported a person close to the Russian Defence Ministry as saying that the deal also includes grenade launchers and ammunition.

Bahraini Government spokesman Abdul-Aziz bin Mubarak Al Khalifa said that the relationship between the nations would strengthen Russia’s position among the Gulf’s US-allied monarchies.

“We are looking to cooperate with Russia in trade and technical services. One of the fields is in the area of light arms,” he added.

Rosoboronexport CEO Anatoly Isaikin did not disclose the details of the arms contract, but did comfirm that the state was also interested in acquiring Russian air-defence systems, aviation equipment and weapons for ground forces.

The UK and France had cancelled all export licences for security equipment after Bahraini Government forces killed several protesters during the recent uprising in the nation.

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