WASHINGTON, Dec. 23 (UPI) -- The Russian government has completed the free delivery of its S-300 air defense system to the government of Kazakhstan, according to Russian media reports.
The delivery supports the initiative between Moscow and Astana to construct and operate a common aerospace defense system. Russian defense officials say they delivered the missile system free of charge because it is the country's main contribution to the integrated air defense system.
Russian state-owned media outlet Tass reports the Commonwealth of Independent States, a loose alliance of former Soviet states including Kazakhstan, has plans to further develop its joint air defense system.
"We have approved for 2016 a plan of work of the Defense Ministers' Council of the CIS countries and a plan of common steps on the joint air defense system," Shoigu added.
The S-300 missile defense system was developed by the Soviet Union and now used by the Russian government and other armed forces around the world as a surface-to-air defense system against airborne threats.
Moscow has also agreed to deliver S-300 missiles to Iran by the end of 2016.