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Russia's S-300 missile system to be supplied to Iran when lawsuit is settled — deputy FM

The failure to implement the 2007 contract entailed Iran’s complaints against Russia at an international court of arbitration
S-300 air defense system ITAR-TASS/Dmitry Rogulin
S-300 air defense system
© ITAR-TASS/Dmitry Rogulin

MOSCOW, May 27. /TASS/. The contract for supplying air defense systems S-300 to Tehran will be effected when the issue of Iran’s lawsuit has been settled, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said on the Rossiya-24 round-the-clock news channel.

"The contract is being reworked. It was concluded in 2007. Since then too much water has passed under the bridge, the more so, since the issue on the agenda is an extremely complex and politically charged. We are unable to project the 2007 matrix to the current situation from the standpoint of adjusting that agreement to the new realities. The negotiating process is underway," Ryabkov said.

He recalled that the failure to implement the 2007 contract entailed Iran’s complaints against Russia at an international court of arbitration.

"That problem will have to be settled somehow. We will be working on that," Ryabkov said. "If you wish to ask me when the practical implementation of the contract will follow, I can tell you as soon as these issues are resolved."

Russia-Iran S-300 contract

Under the 2007 contract, Moscow was to deliver to Tehran five divisions of the missile systems of medium range worth over $800 million.

The Iranian side paid $166.8 million in advance. However, until mid-2010 the systems were not supplied to Iran.

In September 2010, then-President Dmitry Medvedev signed a decree on measures on implementing the UN Security Council’s resolution 1929 that in particular banned the S-300 supplies to Iran.

The contract was severed and the advance payment was sent back to the Islamic Republic.

Moscow lifts embargo on S-300 deliveries to Iran

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree allowing S-300 deliveries to Iran on April 13. The document came into force on the day it was signed.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said 

Russia’s voluntary embargo on deliveries of S-300 missile systems to Iran is no longer needed due to progress in the resolution of the situation around Iran’s nuclear program.

"Initially, the decision to suspend the implementation of the contract, which was already signed and came into force, was made in September 2010," he recalled. "It was done in the interests of support for consolidated efforts of the six international negotiators to stimulate a maximally constructive process of talks on settlement of the situation around Iran’s nuclear program."

The minister particularly stressed that "it was done absolutely voluntarily."

"Resolution 1929 of the Security Council, which was approved in 2010, just like any other UN resolutions did not impose any restrictions on deliveries of air defense weapons to Iran. I will emphasize, it was done in the spirit of goodwill to stimulate progress at the talks," he said.