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France has agreed to sell two Mistral helicopter carriers to Egypt after their sale to Russia was cancelled in August and will not incur a financial loss in the transaction, government spokesman Stephane Le Foll said.
Cairo has sought to boost its military power in the face of a two-year insurgency based across the Suez Canal in the Sinai peninsula and fears the conflict in neighbouring Libya could spill over. Egypt's allies are also keen to burnish its image in a region beset by turmoil.
"They agreed on the principle and the terms of the acquisition by Egypt" of the two Mistral warships, President Francois Hollande's office said in a statement after he spoke to his Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi.
MOSCOW, October 17. /TASS/. Egypt's delegation will come to Moscow after October 20 to discuss possible supplies to that country of Russian hardware of the Mistral-class helicopter carriers, a source at the military-technical cooperation sphere told TASS on Saturday.
"After the 20th, in about a week, a delegation from Egypt will come to us to discuss possible supplies of certain blocks of radio-electronic equipment for the Mistrals, which Egypt has bought from France," the source said.
The source said the Russian military equipment export authority, Rosoboronexport, had a meeting, devoted to further use of the equipment.
Egypt signed a contract on two Mistral-class helicopter carriers on October 10. The vessels may be supplied to Egypt in summer, 2016 along with storm boats.