Cash-Strapped Pakistan Sold Weapons Worth $364 Million to Ukraine: Reports

Islamabad: Pakistan reportedly earned $364 million in an arms deal with two private US companies last year, supplying ammunition to Ukraine amid its conflict with Russia. According to BBC Urdu, contracts were signed with “Global Military” and “Northrop Grumman” for the sale of 155mm shells, with deliveries made via a British military cargo plane. Despite official denials from Islamabad, details from the American Federal Procurement Data System suggest otherwise.

The alleged contracts were signed on August 17, 2022, during the Pakistan Democratic Movement’s rule, which ousted the Imran Khan-led government through a no-trust vote in April. The contracts coincided with heightened tensions between Russia and Ukraine, exacerbated by Khan’s visit to Russia in February 2022 and subsequent public distancing by then-Army Chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa.

The report claims a $232 million contract was awarded to Global Military and a $131 million contract to Northrop Grumman, both expiring in October 2023. BBC Urdu cites evidence from the State Bank of Pakistan, indicating a 3,000% increase in arms exports during FY 2022-23, totaling $415 million, compared to $13 million in 2021-22.

Earlier reports suggested that secret Pakistani arms sales to the US for use by Ukraine played a role in securing an International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout. Pakistan’s Foreign Office rejects these claims as “baseless and fabricated,” asserting the country’s strict neutrality in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

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