December 2 – Russia has held nor talks with Turkey as of yet on possible supplies of S-300 systems, Russian president’s aide for military technical cooperation Vladimir Kozhin said on Thursday.
“The intergovernmental commission has not yet met and so far there have been no taks, let alone any decisions, on deliveries of S-300 systems to Turkey,” he said.
Turkey’s Minister of National Defense Fikri Isik said earlier the two countries were negotiating possible deliveries of Russian multiple missile launcher systems to Turkey. Later, the chief of Russia’s Federal Service for Military Technical Cooperation, Alexander Fomin, said this issue might be looked at a meeting of the intergovernmental commission.
MOSCOW, October 14. /TASS/. Russia may consider delivering air defense systems to Turkey, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday.
The presidential spokesman made this statement as he was answering questions about the visit, which Russian President Vladimir Putin had paid to Turkey on Monday.
“Indeed, the issues related to military and technical cooperation were on the agenda of contacts between Putin and [Turkish President Tayyip] Erdogan,” Peskov told journalists.
“Various air defense systems were mentioned,” he added.
“If the Turkish side expresses its desire, Russia may consider the possibility of their delivery to Turkey in various modifications,” the Kremlin spokesman said.
“But this is a purely commercial issue, a very sensitive area of cooperation,” Peskov said.
The Russian leader told journalists after his talks on Monday that Russia was ready to continue interaction with Turkey in the sphere of military and technical cooperation and fill it with serious projects of mutual interest.
According to Putin, the proposals from both sides are being studied and have all the grounds for being implemented.
Russian S-300 air defense systems countered “a sudden massive missile attack of the simulated enemy” during drills in the Astrakhan Region.
Russian S-300 missile systems performed combat launches during air defense drills of the Western Military District at the Ashuluk firing range near the southern city of Astrakhan, a spokesman for the district, Igor Muginov, said Thursday.
“According to the drills scenario, the S-300 air defense systems were countering a sudden massive missile attack of the simulated enemy,” Muginov said.
He added that the exercises ended with practicing the most complex element of the combat training, namely, the destruction of a simulated target moving along a ballistic trajectory. Simultaneously, the positions of the S-300 units were attacked by six of these targets, all of them were successfully destroyed.
Russia has delivered over half of the agreed number of S-300 air defense systems to Iran, Russian presidential aide Vladimir Kozhin told Sputnik on Tuesday.
In August, Iranian Defense Minister Hossein Dehghan said that Tehran was expecting Moscow to fulfill its commitments on the deliveries of S-300 air defense systems within September, adding that the main part of the batch had arrived in Iran.
“We have delivered half already, even more,” Kozhin said.
The $800-million Moscow-Tehran contract to deliver Russian-made S-300 air defense systems to Iran was signed in 2007. In 2011, Iran sued Russia in the Geneva Arbitration Court after Moscow suspended the contract in 2010, citing a UN Security Council resolution that placed an arms embargo on Tehran.
Russian President Vladimir Putin lifted the S-300 delivery ban in April 2015, shortly after the P5+1 group of international negotiators and Iran reached a framework nuclear agreement to remove all economic sanctions against Tehran in exchange for its pledge to ensure that all nuclear research in the country should serve exclusively peaceful purposes.
Bahrain’s Ambassador to Russia Ahmed Abdulrahman Saati said that Bahrain is interested in renewing air defense systems and delegation from Bahrain will assess S-300 and S-400 systems at the Army-2016 expo in Russia.
Bahrain is interested in renewing its air defense systems, and its delegation, headed by King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, will assess S-300 and S-400 systems at the Army-2016 expo in Russia, Bahrain’s Ambassador to Russia Ahmed Abdulrahman Saati told Sputnik.
“We are interested in everything new, in renewing [air defense] systems. However, we do not have information regarding the contracts or acquisitions being made, this is classified military information,” Saati said.
“Overall, we are interested in military products, air defense systems, we came to closely assess them. There is an exhibition here where we can see them, military experts will be able to assess them and their suitability, they’ll be able to see, in particular, these two systems [S-300 and S-400,” he added.
Despite the fact that supplying Russian-made S-300 surface-to-air missile systems to Iran does not violate any UN Security Council resolution, the US government expressed concern over the increase of Tehran’s military potential caused by this development.
Meanwhile, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei recently declared that air defense systems are extremely important and “must be on the frontline, ready to repulse any aggression launched by an enemy that seeks to undermine the country’s defense potential.”
Ahmad Vakhshiteh, chief editor of Iranian analytical web portal RussiaViewer, told Sputnik that the sale of S-300 by Russia to Iran is a perfectly legal deal, and that the US has no right to interfere. He pointed out that while several years ago the shipment of these weapons was put on hold due to sanctions enforced via a UN resolution, the Iranian nuclear deal effectively helped resolve that issue.
“The US interference in this issue is illegal. But why does the US protest so vehemently against these shipments? One should pay attention to the growing Saudi influence. Ever since Iran started purchasing these systems, the country’s aerial borders became better defended. So if some countries conflict with Iran – ideologically or geopolitically – or if they seek to destabilize the region to ensure their dominance, they don’t want such an influential state as Iran to improve its military might and increase its defense capabilities,” Vakhshiteh explained.
He also pointed out that the S-300 surface-to-air missile system is a strictly defensive weapon, and that Iran has never acted aggressively or sought to destabilize the region. Therefore, Vakhshiteh argued, it’s small wonder that when asked why the US protests against the shipment of these weapons, Khamenei replied that “the opposing side, the US, is deceitful and opposes the independence of our nation.”
“During the nuclear negotiations Iran performed commendably: it accepted all conditions, making notable concessions. The sanctions previously imposed against Iran were annulled. And as Iran honors its commitments, the West – namely, the United States – should also honor the commitments it made. But instead we see the exact opposite. Recently there was even talk of imposing sanctions against Russia for supplying S-300 to Iran,” he said.
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said that Washington was trying its best to stop Tehran from acquiring Russian S-300 air defense systems.
Washington was trying its best to stop Tehran from acquiring Russian S-300 air defense systems, denying its right of defense from aggression, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said.
“The S-300 system is a defensive and not offensive tool but the Americans have made their utmost efforts to prevent the Islamic Republic’s use of this possibility,” Khamenei said during a meeting with military commanders in Tehran on Sunday, as quoted by the Fars news agency.
He added that Washington was refusing to respect Tehran’s right of defense and preferred the nation to remain defenseless.
The $800-million Moscow-Tehran contract to deliver Russian-made S-300 air defense systems to Iran was signed in 2007. Moscow suspended the contract in 2010, citing a UN Security Council resolution that placed an arms embargo on Tehran.
Russian President Vladimir Putin lifted the S-300 delivery ban in April 2015, shortly after the P5+1 group of international negotiators and Iran reached a framework nuclear agreement to remove all economic sanctions against Tehran in exchange for its pledge to ensure that all nuclear research in the country will be for peaceful purposes.
On August 24, the Iranian parliamentary committee on foreign policy and national security confirmed that Iran had received S-300 air defense systems from Russia.
Iran has recently showcased its newest air defense missile system, Bavar-373, which features characteristics similar to Russia’s S-300, immediately prompting speculations that it is an answer to and a substitute to Russia’s systems, which have yet to be delivered to Tehran under an existing contract.
On Sunday Iranian President Hassan Rouhani unveiled the country’s long-awaited, domestically-built Bavar-373 surface-to-air missile (SAM) defense system.
The home-grown system, which was successfully test-fired in August 2014, is similar to the Russian S-300 and is capable of hitting high altitude targets.
On Monday, the country’s Defense Minister Hossein Dehghan announced that Tehran is set to begin the mass production of its Bavar-373 air defense system once the practical tests that are expected to continue until March 2017 have been completed.
All the above has sparked speculations that the system is an answer to and a substitute to Russia’s systems, which have yet to be delivered to Tehran under an existing contract.
Mahmud Shoori, Director of Eurasia Research Group at the Center for Strategic Research (CSR), a leading Iranian think tank, has commented to Sputnik on the issue.
Technologically, he said, it is quite hard to distinguish what the two systems, Russia’s S-300 and its Iranian analogue, the Bavar-373, have in common or how they differ from each other, and if they could be used simultaneously for similar purposes or not.
However what is more important here is that the domestic development of such a system underscores that the policy of Iran’s military defense industry is aimed at satisfying all of its military needs independently and on its own, to the extent it is possible. He said Tehran is particularly interested in independently ensuring the Islamic Republic’s strategic goals, one of which is the defense of its borders.
Throughout its existence, the expert stressed, Iran has never relied on the support of other states but only on its own capabilities.
However, he noted, Iran’s military defense complex needs an inflow of the most advanced foreign ideas and technology and operationally ready military equipment to ensure the gradual development of its military defense industry and that it is able to comply with the needs of the time.
That is why the country had signed an agreement with Russia on the delivery of its S-300 air defense systems.
“On the whole, I don’t see any problems for Iran continuing its purchase of Russian S-300 under the existing contract, while simultaneously developing and showcasing the achievements of its military defense industry,” Mahmud Shoori told Sputnik.
The top priority for Iran’s military defense complex is to maximize the independent production of its own strategic armament, he explained.
The expert, however, noted that the two systems significantly differ in quality and functionality; however, they could supplement each other.It remains to be seen how they will be used in combat – separately or together.
Back in 2007 Moscow and Tehran signed an agreement for the delivery of five battalion sets of Russian S-300 PMU1 air defense missile systems.
In 2010 Russia halted the deliveries due to a United Nations Security Council resolution imposing sanctions — which included a ban on the sale of high-tech weapons.
After the cancellation of the arms deal, Iran demanded $4 billion in compensation from the Russian state.
In April 2015, after an interim agreement that paved the way for July’s full nuclear deal was signed President Putin lifted that self-imposed ban.
Russia has already delivered the first battalion of S-300PMU-1/SA-20 Gargoyle SAM batteries to Iran.
The S-300 is a long-range SAM system, and can engage aircraft, cruise missiles and theater ballistic missiles.
One S-300 battery usually consists of an engagement radar, a low-altitude radar, and up to eight transporter erector launchers (TEL) with four launch tubes each.Each tube carries one surface-to-air missile. A battalion comprises up to six batteries in addition to a command/fire and control post, as well as an extra target acquisition radar unit.
During Iran’s annual National Day Parade in April, the Iranian military displayed a S-300 target acquisition radar unit, a radar station and a mobile radio antenna. However, no TELs or missiles were displayed.
The S-300 SAMs currently being delivered are an upgraded version of the weapons systems initially ordered by Iran in 2010.
In July 2015, Russian Presidential Aide for military-technical cooperation Vladimir Kozhin announced that Russia would update the S-300 SAMs to meet specific Iranian needs, but didn’t offer any technical details.
Kozhin recently said that Russia will complete the delivery of S-300 air defense systems to Iran by the end of the year.
Mahmud Shoori gave a positive forecast for continuation of military-technical cooperation between Russia and Iran.
“As far as I know, our defense minister has said that Iran has currently no need for an agreement on the delivery of the advanced missile defense systems. What we already have in service and what is now being delivered by Russia is enough to satisfy the demands of our defense industry,” he told Sputnik.However, he added, the military industry does not stand still and is developing. It is highly possible that Iran is going to face new geopolitical challenges in the near future and thus will have new defense needs.
Political conditions will then dictate what Russian military technology will be of interest to Iran.
“I personally think that the military-technical cooperation between our countries is certain to continue,” he said.
“However the subject of our deals will depend on a number of factors including the further development of bilateral relations between Russia and Iran,” he added.
Combat crews will engage target-missiles “Armavir” and “Kaban”. The air attack will be the same for all the participants.
According to the results of the previous stages, the Russian team is in the lead of the competitions.
Spectators and guests of the contest will be able to see dog-fight between fighters MiG-29, combat launches of S-300 SAM systems as well as of cannon-missile AD systems Pantsir-S against aerial targets, launches of missiles from MiG-29 as well as bombing performed by pilots of Tu-22M3 and Su-34 aircraft.
The contest is participated by teams from Kazakhstan, Belarus, China and Russia.