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No aircraft to Myanmar: UK tells India

The British High Commissioner warned that the sale would have a knock-on effect on the supply of spares.

india Updated: Jan 30, 2006 19:45 IST
Indo-Asian News Service
Indo-Asian News Service

British High Commissioner Michael Arthur warned on Monday that India's going ahead with its plans to sell British-origin Britten-Norman Islander aircraft to Myanmar would have 'a knock-on effect on the supply of spares' for the aircraft.

Arthur added that the European Union guidelines 'precluded' the sale of military equipment to Myanmar.

The British Government had taken up this issue with the Ministry of External Affairs earlier this month.

The Islander is a light observation aircraft that carries no weapons.

The sale was supposed to have been announced during Indian Navy Chief Admiral Arun Prakash's visit to Myanmar in January.

Western nations have suspended military sales to Myanmar to protest the suppression of pro-democracy activists there, forcing the military regime in Yangon to turn to China for arms purchases.

The Indian Navy, too, is not keen on upsetting the British Government as it has several ongoing deals with British firms. These include the supply of spares for its helicopters and the sale of 10 used Sea Harriers from the Royal Navy.

First Published: Jan 30, 2006 19:17 IST