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Published in Stream:
Russia Update: April 13, 2015
Press by
The Interpreter
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Moscow Sees No Reason Not to Lift 'Voluntary Embargo' on Iran, Says Lavrov; US Protests Delivery of S-300s
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Presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said there will be no moratoriums on delivery of the S-300 missiles systems to Iran, reported, citing RIA Novosti.

"Some sort of legal expenses are hardly likely if the delivery is undertaken," he said, referring to past concerns that Russia may have to pay a fine for not delivering the S-300s. In 2012, Russia returned a pre-payment to Iran but has not incurred any penalties.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov explained why its "voluntary embargo" on arming Iran is no longer needed:

"Initially, the decision to suspend the implementation of the contract, which was already signed and came into force, was made in September 2010," he recalled. "It was done in the interests of support for consolidated efforts of the six international negotiators to stimulate a maximally constructive process of talks on settlement of the situation around Iran’s nuclear program.

Resolution 1929 of the Security Council, which was approved in 2010, just like any other UN resolutions did not impose any restrictions on deliveries of air defense weapons to Iran. I will emphasize, it was done in the spirit of goodwill to stimulate progress at the talks."

Lavrov said the recent talks in Lausanne had brought  "substantial progress in settling Iran’s nuclear problem." Referring to the permanent members of the UN Security Council and Iran, Lavrov said:

"The P5+1 stated progress in the settlement of Iran’s nuclear program. Political frameworks of the final agreement were coordinated. They received a high assessment on the international arena."

There are also reports that Russia may resume arms supply of Iran in other areas:

Secretary of State John Kerry has objected to Moscow's move in a phone call to Lavrov today, ABC News reported. The White House "indicated the move could endanger plans to ultimately lift sanctions on Iran as part of a final nuclear deal," said ABC.

-- Catherine A. Fitzpatrick