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Diplomat: Russia’s lifting ban on S-300 missiles suppliesto Iran opens great opportunities

June 03, 2015, 9:13 UTC+3
Iran's ambassador doesn't consider the Iranian lawsuit against Russia's state-run arms export company a serious problem
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S-300 air defense systems

S-300 air defense systems

© ITAR-TASS/Marina Lystseva

MOSCOW, June 3. /TASS/. Moscow’s decision to lift ban on supplying Tehran with S-300 air defense missile systems is opening great prospects of boosting military and technical bilateral cooperation, Iran’s Ambassador to Moscow Mehdi Sanai has told the Kommersant business daily.

"The decision of Russian President Vladimir Putin on lifting the embargo on supplies of S-300 systems to Iran opens significant opportunities in the sphere of military and technical cooperation," Sanai said.

Speaking on whether Iran would withdraw its lawsuit against Russia's state-run arms export company Rosoboronexport from Geneva’s arbitration court over the canceled deal, the diplomat said he believes it's most important that "the Russian president has lifted the ban."

"It is up to experts to decide on the rest," Sanai said in the interview. "These are already technical moments rather than serious problems. I don’t think that they will become an obstacle for implementing the decision of the Russian president," he said.

Asked whether the issue with the court would be settled if Russia supplied the systems, the ambassador said, "of course."

In early April, six world powers confirmed significant progress after talks with Iran on the nuclear program in Lausanne, Switzerland. Russian President Vladimir Putin lifted the ban on the S-300 supplies to Iran on April 13.

Iran filed a $4 billion lawsuit against Rosoboronexport in an international arbitration court in Geneva in April 2011 after Russia suspended the 2007 contract on the supplies of S-300 missile systems to Iran.

Under the 2007 contract, Moscow pledged to deliver to Tehran five battalions of medium-range air defense systems S-300 worth $800 million. Iran made an advance payment of $166.8 million. No supplies followed up to the middle of 2010.

In September 2010, Russia’s then-president Dmitry Medvedev signed a decree on measures to implement the UN Security Council’s Resolution 1929 of June 2010 to prohibit the supplies of S-300 to Iran. The contract was annulled and the advance payment was returned to Iran.

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