Mnangagwa Receives 18 Helicopters From Putin
19 May 2023
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By-The Russian Government has delivered 18 new helicopters to Harare, which authorities say would be used for emergency air medical services, law enforcement and tourism.

The helicopters will be used for air ambulances, air policing, and rescue missions in case of disasters.
Further, the helicopters are set to boost the tourism sector against the backdrop of an assured health service for tourists through emergency air medical services that will be offered in resort areas like Mana Pools and Victoria Falls.
The helicopters are part of the Government’s partnership with the Russian Federation and were delivered to the Robert Mugabe International Airport in Harare.
Speaking at a ceremony to receive the helicopters, President Mnangagwa said the bond between Zimbabwe and Russia was unbreakable, solid and had stood the test of time.
“Zimbabwe is under sanctions, we are constrained unlike our neighbours and the rest of the world to acquire the tools we need to mitigate the impact of cyclones and disasters in our region.
“When I discussed with my brother (Russian) President (Vladimir) Putin, he recommended that their company, Russian State Corporation, (Rostec) produce the type of equipment we want and we have ordered these 18,” he said.
President Mnangagwa said he is confident that the Ministries of Environment, Climate, Environment and Tourism as well as Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage would swiftly respond when disasters strike as was the case during Cyclone Idai.
The President also hailed the continued excellent relations with Russia, saying most freedom fighters, including himself, were trained in that country. He said the historical co-operation is no longer military but is now “economic and humanitarian”.
Added to that, President Mnangagwa said the relationship with Russia is developmental and focused on modernising the economy, improving lives and moving people from poverty to prosperity, a process that needs friends to assist in the exploitation of the country’s resources.
“The Russian Federation is under sanctions, Zimbabwe is under sanctions from the same people for different reasons, then you are told don’t speak to that guy who is under sanctions when I am also under sanctions. You are saying victims of sanctions should not speak to each other, what nonsense?” he said.
President Mnangagwa said the country stands tall and is progressing despite the sanctions which taught the nation to be independent, innovative and produce essentials like medical oxygen.
He said the country was also food secure before reiterating that Zanu-PF was headed for a landslide victory in the harmonised elections set for August.

The director-general of Rostec, Mr Sergey Chemezov, said the products manufactured by their company are ideal for the African continent.
Mr Chemezov said some of the helicopters are medical ones to be used as air ambulances for providing emergency medical assistance while others serve as a basis for law enforcement and State security.
Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage Minister Kazembe Kazembe said it was impossible to talk of Zimbabwe’s economic journey without mentioning President Mnangagwa’s engagement and re-engagement efforts.

-State media