France will supply Georgia with advanced air defense missile systems in line with a contract signed in Paris earlier this month, a Georgian news website reported on Saturday.
On June 15 Georgian Defense Minister Tina Khidasheli signed an agreement with ThalesRaytheonSystems President Gerome Bedel for the purchase of “advanced” air defense systems that will “guarantee the country’s air defense,” Khidasheli said.
Even though many of its details remain shrouded in mystery, Tbilisi hailed the air defense deal as “a breakthrough” because the Western nations had previously refrained from selling even defensive weapons to the Georgian military.
The contract was inked on the sidelines of the Le Bourget 2015 International Air Show outside Paris.
Photos released by the Georgian Ministry of Defense in their announcement of the deal showcased the ThalesRaytheonSystems Ground Master 200 radar and Crotale missiles, manufactured by Thales Air Defense.
Many saw this as a hint that Georgia was in the market for radars and other airspace control gear for its military.
The ThalesRaytheonSystems’ Ground Master 200 (GM200) is a multi-mission tactical 3-D medium range air defense radar.
The NG (Next Generation) version of the Crotale is an all-weather short-range air defense system developed by Thales Air Defense based at Bagneux in France.