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Russia, the leading arms supplier to Southeast Asia, is also promising COVID-19 vaccines and pushing other cooperation.   © Illustration by Takahiro Suganuma
Asia Insight

Guns and jabs: Russia courts ASEAN caught between US and China

Arms sales and COVID vaccines help Moscow punch above economic weight

DIMITRI SIMES JR., Contributing writer | Russia & Caucasus

MOSCOW -- On a tour of Russia last month, the leader of Myanmar's military regime met top defense and arms industry officials, visited a shipyard and helicopter factory, and dressed up in academic regalia to receive an "honorary professorship" from the Defense Ministry.

"Thanks to Russia, our army has become one of the strongest in the region," Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing told Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu.

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