[original article in Jamejam Online]
Hossein Amirabdollahian, Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab-African Affairs said, Tehran will very soon receive the S-300 missile defense systems from Russia. This comment came at a press conference after his visit to Moscow on May 25th with Mikhail Bogdanov, President Putin’s Representative in the Middle East.
In response to a reporter’s question about the S-300, Amirabdollahian said, “Negotiations on the delivery of the S-300 with the Russians was successful.” He went on to say, “Solving the issue of the delivery of the S-300 to Iran will not take too long and it is possible that these weapons will be delivered at the first opportunity.”
When Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister was asked about the negotiations with the Russians on the delivery of the S-300 missile defense systems, he said, “Everything is going well.” On April 13th, Russia’s President, Vladimir Putin, signed a decree canceling a previous ban on the delivery of the S-300 air defense missiles to Iran.
In 2007, Iran and Russia signed a contract on the supply of S-300s which obligated Moscow to deliver five of the air defense missile systems to Tehran. However, until recently, Moscow refused to supply the S-300 to Iran citing the fourth round of sanctions by the UN Security Council. In response, Tehran filed a complaint against Moscow.
After President Putin signed the decree, Sergey Lavrov, Russia’s Foreign Minister, said the progress with the nuclear negotiations will lead to the lifting of the sanction on Iran for the S-300 defense missiles. According to [Lavrov], the delay in delivering the S-300s to Iran was not related to the UN sanctions but rather Moscow chose not to [supply Iran with the air defense missile systems] in order to help reach an agreement on Iran’s nuclear program.