William Thornberry, the Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee clearly said in a recent interview that only exemption India can get from Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) federal law on the procurement of weapons from Russia will be for its existing weapons systems in the supply of spares and technical servicing and overhaul from Russia but procurement of S-400 system will lead to violation of the legislation, and will attract possible sanctions on India .

When asked how India’s requirement for Long Ranged Air Defence system will be satisfied to meet its security needs for that Thornberry said that United States Congress already has designated India has major Defence Partner which in that law clearly specifies that Missile Defence System is an area which US and India can work together.

Thornberry said a combination of Indian and US technologies can lead to the development of an Air Missile Defence System which can meet India’s security scenarios and US Government is also in talks with other countries who are interested in procurement of the same system from Russia so that same possible allies can come together for a Joint International Collaboration to meet their requirements .

Thornberry praised US-Israeli Joint development of Arrow missile defense which already has seen development and deployment of Arrow 1, Arrow 2 and Arrow 3 and have also started works on next-generation Arrow 4 and see this collab which can be replicated with India if India agrees to not purchase S-400 Air-Defence System from Russia.

In Past India was seen interested in the procurement of Arrow II theatre missile defence interceptor from Israel but was denied due to the MTCR sanctions. India has officially joined the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) as a full member in 2016 but since then India has not shown any interest in the Israeli system again.

Thornberry while speaking to Indian officials might have agreed for the sale of Israeli Arrow theatre missile defense interceptor which has American components for India’s immediate needs and clearly by this statement has offered a Joint collaboration for design and development of a New Aerial Missile Defence System to meet its requirements and also of its allies.

India already has developed a independent Ballistic Missile Defence Programme and the first phase is likely to be deployed soon and work on Phase-II already has commenced. India reportedly is also working on the development of Two long Range Surface to Air Missile in class of 250 km along with a 120 km which will be part of its XR-SAM Aerial Missile Defence System which gradually will be upgraded to S-400 Class Aerial Missile Defence System.


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