Russia may deploy transport helicopters in Afghanistan to help the NATO-led military contingent fighting Taliban militants in the region, according to a defence industry official.

Russia’s federal service military and technical cooperation deputy head Vyacheslav Dzirkaln said heavy-lift transport helicopters could be deployed for Nato forces as part of the strategic airlift interim solution project, according to RIA Novosti.

“Russian Mi-26T Halo helicopters of this class have already demonstrated their unique capabilities and performed well in Afghanistan,” he said.

The Mi-26T helicopters have been serving Nato forces operating in Afghanistan for more than three years.

The Nato-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan has about 120,000 troops from a total of 46 countries.