MP: Delay in Delivery of S-300 Missiles to Iran Impairs Russia's Face
TEHRAN (FNA)- Any delay in the delivery of the sophisticated S-300 air defense missile system to Tehran will impair Russia's face and will make it difficult for Moscow to find new trade partners in the world, an Iranian legislator warned.
Head of Iran-Russia Parliamentary Friendship Committee Mehdi Sanae'i elaborated on the agreement between the two countries, signed in 2005, arguing that Russia's delay in the delivery of the S-300 air-defense missiles to Tehran is resulted from outside pressure.
"The delivery of S-300 missile defense system to Iran is part of Moscow's definite obligation and no excuse to dodge the responsibility is acceptable," Sanae'i told MNA.
"Moscow's failure to deliver the air-defense missile system to Tehran would not only hinder cooperation between the two states, but also damage the country's status in finding new partners in the region," Sanae'i maintained.
His remarks came on the same day Iran's defense minister called on Russia to abide by an agreement signed between the two countries on the delivery of the sophisticated S-300 air defense missile system to Tehran.
Vahidi's remarks came in reaction to the comments of Russian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Andrei Denisov, who announced last week that Russia had decided to freeze the delivery of the missiles to Iran, as it was against the new round of UN sanctions on Tehran approved on June 9.
"Moscow believes that the sanctions resolution clearly forbids the sale of the S-300 system to Iran," Denisov said.
Vahidi also pointed out that the recently approved sanctions against Iran by the UN Security Council do not at all ban the delivery of S-300 air defense system to Iran.
The UN resolution does not specifically prohibit Russia from supplying the S-300, but Moscow has announced it was blocking the delivery of five batteries of S-300 sold to Tehran in 2007.
The Russians cited the fourth round of economic sanctions imposed on Iran by UNSC on June 9 for their decision.
Tehran has been seeking to purchase the sophisticated defense system to improve its power of deterrence in reaction to Israeli war rhetoric against Iran's nuclear facilities.
Moscow signed a contract with Tehran in 2007 to supply the powerful S-300 missiles to Iran.
The S-300 surface-to-air system, known as the SA-20 in the West, can track targets and fire at aircraft 120 kilometers (75 miles) away. It also features high jamming immunity and is capable of simultaneously engaging up to 100 targets.http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.php?nn=8904030461