MINSK, Belarus, Dec. 16 (UPI) -- Russia delivered two anti-aircraft missile systems to Belarus and full deliveries of the remaining 12 are expected Christmas Eve, officials said in Minsk.
Belarusian defense officials said Minsk took delivery of two of the 12 Tor-M2 anti-aircraft missile systems expected from Russia, state-run news agency RIA Novosti reports.
"The first two units arrived yesterday," Belarusian Defense Minister Yury Zhadobin was quoted as saying. The rest of the delivery was expected on or before Dec. 24, he added.
The short-range surface-to-air system will be deployed, he added, near the western border with Poland.
Moscow and Washington last week locked horns over U.S. plans for a missile defense system in Eastern Europe. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the aim of the system is to deter threats from Iran.
Moscow, after its favorite to win an election in one of Georgia's breakaway republics, said its war there in 2008 deterred NATO's eastward expansion.
Moscow in August 2010 deployed its S-300 missile shield to Georgia's breakaway republic of Abkhazia to protect the airspace from "intruders."
The Russian government said last week it might skip next year's NATO summit unless it secures agreements over European missile defense.