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The impact of Russia’s ban on S-300 Iran sales

Sept. 28, 2010 at 4:12 PM

MOSCOW, Sept. 28 (UPI) -- Russia's ban on S-300 sales to Iran is affecting Russian public opinion.

Seeking the high ground in the discussion, Iranian Ambassador to Russia Seyed Mahmoud-Reza Sajjadi had an "a small, informal, friendly poll" among his Russian readers in response to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev's decision to halt the sales.

The result, not surprisingly, was to overturn the ban instituted after the latest round of sanctions imposed by the U.N. Security Council on Iran, Gazeta.ru reported Tuesday.

Many analysts point out that Russia's policy toward Iran is contradictory, as, on the one hand, it assists in opening the Bushehr Nuclear Electric Power Station despite Iran's tardiness in paying its bills, while succumbing to Security Council sanctions and consequently blocking supplying S-300s anti-aircraft missile systems to assist in the rearming of Iran's air defenses.

In light of the broken contract Iranian Defense Minister Ahmad Vahidi called on Russia "to demonstrate that it holds an independent viewpoint with regard to relations with other states and other international issues."

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