The United States has warned Egypt against its plan of buying Sukhoi Su-35 fighters from Russia for $2 billion.
"In terms of the expanding Russian influence in the region, that’s obviously something which we are quite concerned about. We don’t see a lot of material benefits to engagements with the Russia. We just would encourage the Egyptians to turn more toward the West, toward the United States," Military Watch Magazine reported officials in the know of the purchase as saying Wednesday.
Washington has issued a blunt warning that such purchases would result in American economic sanctions against Cairo, the report added.
Egypt wanted to acquire a dozen of Russian 4++ generation air-superiority fighters. The first reports about Egypt’s willingness to buy the Su-35 jets appeared in 2017.
"The signing of the contract was carried out at the end of 2018 and the delivery of the aircraft will begin as early as 2020-21,” Kommersant news daily reported in mid-March quoting two top managers of defense industry enterprises as saying.
The confirmation and negotiation started after the fighters were used during the Russian operations in Syria. These aircraft will replace obsolete MiG-21s and Chinese J-7 derivatives, the source stated.