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10:07 AM, March 18, 2019
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Russia Accuses Slovakia of Illegally Repairing Afghanistan’s Mi-17 Helicopters
Mi-17 V5 helicopter (image: Rosoboronexport)

Russian Helicopters has accused Slovakian firm LOTN of illegally repairing Russian-origin Mi-17 helicopters belonging to the Afghan Air Force.

“In connection with the publication of information about the overhaul of the second Afghan Air Force Mi-17V-5 helicopter by the Slovak company LOTN, the Russian Helicopters, represented by the developer (the Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant) and the manufacturer (the Kazan Helicopter Plant), notifies about the illegitimacy of the work done," the company told Sputnik Monday.

The overhaul of the choppers was carried out on the basis of the repair/overhaul documentation developed by the Slovakian firm without the participation and supervision of the designer and manufacturer. The updated overhaul and design documentation for the Mi-17V-5 military transport helicopter, as well as spare parts and group kits for the overhaul were not supplied to the LOTN by the Russian firm, Russian Helicopters has said.

"Russian Helicopters holding disclaims all liability for the further safe operation of this helicopter and has good reasons to refuse to provide service support for this helicopter's operation," the company stressed.

On March 1, Mi-17 helicopter was repaired by Slovakia’s LOTN company on the basis of a contract with the NSPA (NATO Support and Procurement Agency) won in 2016 in public tender, company said in a press statement.

"Despite the existence of sanctions imposed on the Russian Federation, while still operating in full compliance with all applicable international and national regulations, LOTN is continuing to support general repairs of the Mi-17 helicopters," CEO and Chairman of the Board LOTN JUDr Martin Dušanič had said.

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