Azerbaijan, Russia continue Gabala radar talks

Thu 16 February 2012 08:45 GMT | 12:45 Local Time

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Azerbaijani and Russian officials have held the latest round of talks in Moscow on extending the lease of the Gabala radar station.

Russian Defence Minister Anatoliy Serdyukov received the Azerbaijani delegation to the talks, led by Deputy Prime Minister Yaqub Eyyubov.

They discussed the status of the Gabala Radar Station and an extension to the interstate agreement under which Russia operates the station, the Russian Defence Ministry press service reported, according to APA.

The sides agreed to continue the negotiations to allow for a document to be signed as soon as possible, the ministry said, but gave no further details.

Led by Yagub Eyyubov, the Azerbaijani delegation included Defence Minister Safar Abiyev, Finance Minister Samir Sharifov, the chairman of the State Committee for Land and Cartography, Garib Mammadov, and Deputy Foreign Minister Khalaf Khalafov.

Russia's current lease of the Gabala radar station expires on 24 December 2012.

Azerbaijani officials, including Deputy Foreign Minister Araz Azimov, have said that the current annual rent of $7 million paid by Russia for the radar station is too low. Azerbaijan is reported to be seeking a rental charge of $15 million per year, but the figure has not been officially confirmed.

Azerbaijan is also seeking other improvements in the lease, including extra funds from Russia to tackle the ecological impact of the radar station, more jobs for Azerbaijanis at the station, joint use of the station and a ban on passing data received at the station to third countries without the consent of Baku.

The Daryal-type radar in Gabala came into operation in 1985 and was one of the eight main stations of the USSR Missile Defence Complex. It has a range of up to 6,000 kilometres, and was designed to detect missile launches as far afield as the Indian Ocean. The radar’s surveillance covers Iran, Turkey, India, Iraq and the entire Middle East. The station can track the trajectory of a missile, allowing for it to be intercepted.



See Also

Russian Defence Ministry to complete Gabala radar negotiations by June

Azerbaijan forms group for talks with Russia on Gabala radar station



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