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Russia to buy navy ship from France

A File photo of an Amphibious assault ship.

MOSCOW (AP/PTI): A Russian news agency is reporting that Moscow plans to buy a French amphibious assault ship as the Kremlin seeks to reaffirm Russia's global reach.

Navy Admiral Oleg Burtsev is quoted by RIA Novosti as saying the Defence Ministry also plans to license the production of four more ships of the Mistral class in Russia under the guidance of French engineers.

A Mistral ship is capable of carrying more than a dozen helicopters along with dozens of tanks and other armored vehicles and is fit for missions intended to project Russian naval power to distant areas.

Burtsev said the ships will be part of Russia's Arctic and Pacific fleets.

This would be the first such purchase from a NATO nation and may add to the uneasiness of some of Moscow's ex-Soviet neighbours.

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