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Russia plans small hike in military budget

Aug. 8, 2009 at 1:07 AM

MOSCOW, Aug. 8 (UPI) -- Russia plans a slight increase in military spending in 2010, with $15 billion budgeted for weapons, equipment and maintenance, an official said Friday.

Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov told a cabinet meeting the amount, 470 billion rubles, is a 1.2 percent increase over 2009, the Novosti news agency reported.

Ivanov described as the priorities "maintenance and development of the nuclear capability and missile and space defense forces, providing troops with modern offensive weapons, as well as command and control, communication and intelligence systems, and strengthening military infrastructure in key strategic sectors."

He said Sukhoi warplanes, submarines and missiles are among the planned purchases. Ivanov told the cabinet the Finance Ministry will receive a draft defense budget by Aug. 20.

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