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Eyeing China threat, India delivers BrahMos missiles to Philippines

The transfer was made under a $375 million agreement signed in 2022.

Visitors look at a display of India’s Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) Brahmos missile at the DefExpo 2018 on April 11, 2018. (Photo by ARUN SANKAR/AFP via Getty Images)

By: Shubham Ghosh

INDIA on Friday (19) fulfilled its commitment under a 2022 pact to deliver the first batch of BrahMos supersonic cruise missiles to the Philippines. The transfer was made under a $375 million (£301 million) agreement signed two years ago and the first export of the missile by India.

The Indian Air Force deployed its C-17 Globemaster transport aircraft to transport the missiles to the Philippines, where they were received by the Philippines’ Marine Corps, defence sources in New Delhi confirmed. The Filipino officials were also given sweets by their Indian counterparts during the delivery.

The export of ground systems for the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile system, along with the missiles, commenced in March, they added.

The Philippines is receiving the missile systems amid its escalating tensions with China due to frequent clashes in the South China Sea. Manila has plans to deploy the three batteries of the BrahMos missile system in the archipelago’s coastal areas to enhance security against regional threats.

The deal also comes at a time when India is looking to boost its strategic ties with the Philippines amid concerns over Beijing’s rising military assertiveness in the South China Sea region.

According to local newspaper Manila Bulletin, the Indian missile system is “supposedly coming in to counter Chinese aggression.”

The report said citing sources that the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is “upbeat” over missiles delivered by India.

The deal has received clearance from multiple partner nations involved in the programme.

The BrahMos supersonic cruise missile, a joint venture between India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation and Russian Federation’s NPO Mashinostroyeniya, is said to be one of the most successful missile programmes in the world.

Acknowledged as the foremost and swiftest precision-guided weapon on a global scale, BrahMos has played a pivotal role in enhancing India’s deterrence capabilities.

The supersonic cruise missiles that can be launched from submarines, ships, aircraft or land platforms.

They can fly at a speed of 2.8 Mach or almost thrice the speed of sound.

Several other countries such as Argentina have also expressed interest in procuring BrahMos missiles from India.

(With ANI inputs)

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