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Russia Bans Sale of S-300 Missiles And Other Weapons to Iran

Russian President  has signed a decree banning the
delivery of S-300 air defense systems and a host of other major arms to
Iran, the Kremlin said Wednesday.
The ban, which includes battle tanks, armored vehicles,
large-caliber artillery systems, warplanes, military helicopters, ships
and missiles, is part of measures Russia is taking to comply with UN
Security Council Resolution 1929 of June 9, 2010.
  
Earlier on Wednesday, Chief of the Russian General Staff Army Gen.
Nikolai Makarov said Russia would not deliver S-300 air defense missile
systems to Iran as planned because such transfers are prohibited under
UN sanctions.
Medvedev also banned entry to and transit via Russia for a number of
Iranian nationals connected with the country’s nuclear program, and
banned Russian individuals and legal entities from rendering financial
services if the services relate to Iran’s nuclear activity.
Russia signed an $800 million contract on delivery to Iran of S-300
systems to equip at least five battalions in late 2007. The contract’s
implementation had so far been delayed. Experts are considering whether
the missiles fall under the sanctions imposed on Iran by the UN
Security Council in June.
The sanctions include a ban on supplies of conventional arms to
Iran. According to the document, “states are prohibited from selling or
in any way transferring to Iran eight broad categories of heavy weapons
(battle tanks, armored combat vehicles, large caliber artillery
systems, combat aircraft, attack helicopters, warships, missiles or
missile systems).” However, the S-300 air defense systems are not
included in the UN Register of Conventional Arms.
Israel and the United States have voiced concerns over Russia’s
plans to supply high-precision S-300 systems, capable of destroying
aircraft at ranges of 150 km (90 miles) and at altitudes of up to 27 km
(17 miles), to Iran. No such systems have been delivered to the Islamic
Republic yet.
Commenting on Medvedev’s decree to ban the sale of weapons to Iran,
Russia’s envoy to NATO Dmitry Rogozin said: “If this decision was made,
it was solely due to Russia’s national security.”
International pressure on Iran increased in early February when
Tehran announced it had begun enriching uranium to 20 percent in lieu
of an agreement on an exchange that would provide it with fuel for a
research reactor. In June, the UN Security Council passed a resolution
imposing a fourth set of sanctions on Iran over its nuclear program.
Iran currently has some 2.8 metric tons of low enriched uranium and
22 kilograms of 20 percent enriched uranium, according to the latest
IAEA report. Experts say that these 22 kilograms are already enough to
produce a nuclear bomb.