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Putin signs decree lifting ban on delivering S-300 to Iran

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
This file photo shows a Russian S-300 anti-aircraft missile system

Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a presidential decree paving the way for the long-overdue delivery of S-300 missile system to Iran, the Kremlin says.

Putin’s decree lifts a ban on "the shipment from Russia to Iran" of the S-300 missiles, the Kremlin said in a statement on Monday.

The decree lifts the ban on transit through the Russian territory, including by air, the delivery from the Russian territory to Iran and the transfer outside of Russia with the use of vessels and aircraft flying the Russian state flag of S-300 missile air defense systems, the Russian Interfax news agency reported.

The decision to lift the ban comes after Iran and the P5+1 group of countries - five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany - reached a mutual understanding on Tehran’s nuclear program in the Swiss city of Lausanne on April 2.

According to the statement, no Iranian nuclear facility will be shut down while all sanctions against the Islamic Republic will be terminated.

Under a contract signed in 2007, Russia was obliged to provide Iran with at least five S-300 defense systems.

However, Moscow refused to deliver the surface-to-air missiles to Tehran in 2010 under the pretext that it is covered by the fourth round of the United Nations Security Council sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program, which bars hi-tech weapons sales to Tehran.

Following Moscow’s refusal to deliver the system, Iran filed a USD four-billion suit against the Russian arms firm, Rosoboronexport, with the International Court of Arbitration in Geneva.

The S-300 missiles have a 125-mile (200-kilometer) range.


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