Russia has turned down a request from Pakistan to purchase the Su-35 fighter jet, an aircraft it has sold to Islamabad’s closest ally, China.
A report in Russian publication, Sputnik quoted Russian Foreign Ministry’s director of the Second Asian Department , Zamir Kabulov as saying that, “Moscow is not engaged in negotiations on Su-35 fighter jet supplies to Islamabad despite the announcement by Pakistan of possible deliveries.”
"This [information] has emerged at the instigation of the Pakistanis and is not true. I suppose that the FSMTC [Russian Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation] and [Russian state arms exporter] Rosoboronexport have already responded, there are no such negotiations," Zamir said.
Earlier, the Pakistani ambassador to Russia told Sputnik that Chief of Air Staff of the Pakistan Air Force Sohail Aman had "fruitful talks" in Moscow in July on purchasing of Russian Su-35.
In an earlier report by defenseworld.net, a Russian source had said, “Given that Russian weapon sales to Pakistan was a sensitive issue with its traditional partner, India, a way would have to found in which it would not appear that Russia was selling aircraft which are more advanced than the Su-30MKI with India.”
One of the ways being considered was that the aircraft would be sold to China in stock form and then transferred to Pakistan after necessary modifications as per Islamabad's requirements. The source clarified that it was too early to speculate on the nature of the transaction and a lot depended on decisions taken at the political level. However, it was for sure that Moscow would not do anything that would disturb its relationship with New Delhi, he had added.
The Su-35 comes with NIIP Irbis-E passive electronically scanned array radar and the 117S engine which are more advanced than the radar and engine on board the Su-30MKI with India.
Another reason for Russia to sell to Pakistan, either directly or through China is the fear that the latter copies Russian platform and components and sells to foreign customers, the foremost among them being Pakistan.