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Spokesman: Iran denies agreement with Russia over missile delivery
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09:06, December 23, 2008

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Iran denied on Monday that there was an agreement with Russia over missile delivery, the semi-official Fars news agency reported.

No final agreement had yet reached with Russia over the delivery of a new air defense system to Iran, Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hassan Qashqavi told reporters.

"The Foreign Ministry has not yet received anything final in this regard, therefore, I can neither confirm nor deny this agreement," Qashqavi was quoted as saying.

According to Fars, the Iranian lawmaker Ismael Kowsari on Sunday claimed that "the deal had already been finalized with Moscow."

Moreover, Iran's official IRNA news agency reported Sunday that Iran would receive the S-300 air defense systems from Russia soon.

Russia's RIA news agency, on the other hand, quoted confidential sources as saying on Wednesday that Russia was currently fulfilling a contract to deliver S-300 air defense systems to Iran.

In a counter position, Israeli Defense Ministry envoy Amos Gilad, who was visiting Moscow on Friday, said that Israel expected Russia to respect his country's interests.

"The deliveries of dangerous armaments to our enemies won't serve the interests of peace and, for instance, can help Iran wipe Israel off the face of the earth," Gilad said.

The S-300 is a series of Russia's longer range surface-to-air missile systems. It was developed as a system against aircraft and cruise missiles for Soviet Union's anti-air defense branch of the military, but later variations were also developed to intercept ballistic missiles.

It is more powerful than the Tor-M1 missile defense system which Russia has delivered to Iran.


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