Iran interested in all types of Russian weapons, not only S-300 system — Kremlin

Russia has reportedly launched the procedure of the delivery of the S-300 air defense missile systems to Iran

© Donat Sorokin/TASS

YEKATERINBURG, November 25. /TASS/. Iran is interested in getting all types of Russian weapons, not only the S-300 anti-aircraft missile defense systems, Russian presidential aide for military-technical cooperation Vladimir Kozhin told reporters on Wednesday.

“The Iranian side is very interested in military-technical cooperation. So far we have signed a contract that has been announced (on the delivery of the S-300 system). They are interested in the whole range of our weapons, because they have a big army, but due to the sanctions they have not had any upgrading for a very long period: in the air forces, navy and ground troops. In general, in a broad range,” the Kremlin official told TASS.

On Monday, Iran’s Tasnim news agency reported, referring to statements made by the Iranian Ambassador to Russia, Mehdi Sanai, that Russia had launched the procedure of the delivery of the S-300 air defense missile systems to Iran. “The process of the S-300 system’s delivery to Iran has entered the implementation stage,” the diplomat was quoted by the agency.

Earlier this month, Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehghan said that Iran would receive Russia’s S-300 air defense missile systems by the end of the year that, according to the Iranian calendar, ends on March 20, 2016. “Iran will get the Russian S-300 ‘ground-to-air’ anti-aircraft defense missile systems by March 2016,” he was quoted by the Press TV.

Dehghan added that Iran will get “the better part” of the missile systems’ batch in less than two months. The minister also said that “Iran bought as many S-300 air defense missile systems as it needs.” In addition, according to the minister, the Iranian military are currently undergoing training in Russia in the use of the systems.

Sergey Chemezov, the head of state hi-tech corporation Rostec, which integrates Rosoboronexport state arms seller, said previously that Russia’s contract for the delivery of S-300 air defense missile systems to Iran had been signed and came into force on November 9. “The contract on S-300 systems has been signed,” Chemezov said, without specifying the modification of antiaircraft missile systems that would be delivered to Iran. “I believe that Iran will withdraw its claims to us, when the first part [of the contract] is completed,” the Rostec CEO said.

Russia and Iran signed a contract in 2007 for the supply of five S-300PMU-1 battalions but in the autumn of 2010 then-President Dmitry Medvedev banned the supply of these systems to Tehran. The contract worth more than $800 million was annulled and the paid advance was returned to Iran. Iran filed an almost $4 billion lawsuit against Russia at the Geneva Court of Arbitration over Russia’s nonfulfillment of the contract.

In the spring of 2015, Russian President Vladimir Putin lifted the ban on the supply of S-300 systems to Teheran.

TASS learned at the Dubai Airshow 2015 international aerospace exhibition that Iran will get the S-300PMU-2 version of the air defense system.

The S-300 is a series of Russian long range surface-to-air missile systems produced by NPO Almaz, all based on the initial S-300P version. The S-300 system was developed to defend against aircraft and cruise missiles for the Soviet Air Defense Forces. Subsequent variations were developed to intercept ballistic missiles. The S-300 system was first deployed by the Soviet Union in 1979, designed for the air defense of large industrial and administrative facilities, military bases, and control of airspace against enemy strike aircraft.