TEHRAN, March 5. /TASS/. Iran fully supports the Russian aerospace operation in Syria and will render assistance to it further on, Iranian Defense Minister Hossein Dehghan told the Fars news agency.
According to Dehghan, Tehran cooperates with Russia in supporting the legitimate Syrian authorities, whose official request gives ground for our countries’ presence in Syria. "We utterly and completely support the actions of the Russian Aerospace Forces," he added.
Ground campaigns being conducted on the Syrian territory need air support and present combat air force, and for this purpose we render assistance to Russian aircraft, particularly at Shahid Nojeh Air Base (outside of the Iranian city of Hamadan - TASS), the Minister said. "This cooperation has been present for a limited period of time on the base of their request and our reply," he said, adding that the cooperation will continue if required.
Meanwhile, the issue of granting an Iranian military base to Russia has never been raised as it is prohibited by the country’s constitution, Dehghan said.
Iran on Saturday successfully tested the Russian-made S-300 surface-to-air missile defense system, which the Islamic Republic has purchased from Russia and integrated into the defense system of the country, the agency reported.
When asked about potential plans to purchase more defense systems, the Minister said that he expects no strong dependence on S-300 purchases. "We will rely on our demands and financial abilities," he said.