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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Government Signs Arms, Energy Deals With Ecuador

President Dmitry Medvedev has hailed arms and energy deals with Ecuador as just a beginning, as Moscow continues its drive to deepen ties in South America.

Medvedev and Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa signed a $22 million deal in Moscow on Thursday that sees Russia provide Ecuador with two Mi-17 transport helicopters. Other energy and trade agreements were also signed.

The Kremlin has recently sought to renew Communist-era ties with Latin America.

Some see the flurry of activity as a response to U.S. support to pro-Western Georgia and Ukraine.

Russia has signed multibillion-dollar weapons contracts with Venezuela. In December, Moscow also dispatched three warships to Venezuela, Panama and Cuba for the first time since the Cold War.