Russia’s plans to sell S-300 missile Defense Systems to Iran have to wait for another five years following the final agreement on Tehran’s nuclear program.
As per the agreement, the UN arms embargo against Iran will remain for five years and US missile sanctions will be applicable for another eight years. This means, Russia will be unable to sell it any conventional weapons including anti-missile systems, aircraft and tanks for the period the embargo is in force.
The European Union will lift the economic and financial sanctions based on the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) verification of Iran fulfilling the terms of the agreement.
Russia backtracked on a plan to sell S-300 surface-to-air missiles in 2010, banning sales to Iran after international pressure. However, that issue came back to life on April 13, 2015 when Russia lifted its ban on S-300 sales to Iran and the deal was put in the closet with Russia stating that it had to act in accordance with international agreements.
Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov had said in April this year that the move was in the “spirit of goodwill,” citing progress in negotiations. He had emphasized that its ban was self-imposed and did not fall under any United Nations’ action.
“I think it is the right decision that Russia has made, it is a contract with the good relations we have with Russia, which is fully legal and will have no impact on the (nuclear) negotiations,” Mohammed Javad Zarif, Iran’s Foreign Minister said in April.