After the establishment of formal diplomatic relations between Sri Lanka and the Soviet Union on 19 February 1957, cooperation in military affairs began in the 1960s and bloomed in 70s with Sri Lanka Air Force been equipped with MiG fighters and Kamov helicopters by the Soviet Union.
During the long years of war against the separatist terrorists the Soviet Union and the Russian Federation have been close friends of Sri Lanka. The Sri Lanka Army was equipped with substantial numbers of Soviet designed small arms, artillery and armored vehicles. The backbone of the Sri Lanka air force’s transport fleet was composed of An-32 aircraft and Mil Mi-17 helicopters and its offensive capability was shored up by Russian designed Mi-24 attack helicopters and MiG-27 ground attack aircraft. With this Military-Technical cooperation between the two countries in the military arena, the 1st Defence Attaché to the Russia Federation was appointed in September 2007.
In 2014 and 2015 there were several high level military delegation visits between the two countries on counterpart invitations. Bilateral discussions and visits to major military installations were conducted during these visits and marked further enhancement of the current bilateral relations between the two militaries.