Iraq cancels $4.2 bn Russia arms deal 'over graft' | Bangkok Post: news

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Iraq cancels $4.2 bn Russia arms deal 'over graft'

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Baghdad cancelled a $4.2 billion arms package with Russia on Saturday citing graft concerns and instead opted for new talks, ending a deal that would have made Moscow Iraq's second-biggest arms supplier. 

Iraqi army MIA1 Abrams tanks roll under the victory Arch landmark during an Army Day parade in Baghdad in January. Iraq has cancelled a $4.2 bn package of arms deals with Russia over corruption concerns, a spokesman for Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki said on Saturday.

In a bizarre sequence, however, the acting defence minister who negotiated the deal directly contradicted the prime minister's office, insisting nothing had been cancelled, a position that was swiftly denied by the premier's spokesman.

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