Iran will receive the S-300 missile defense system from Russia despite agreeing to a deal with U.S.-led negotiators last week that offered the Middle Eastern country sanctions relief in exchange for nuclear and weapons restrictions, reported Tass, a pro-Russian news agency. Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Aragchi said at a press conference on Wednesday that Monday’s new UN Security Council resolution on Iran’s nuclear program does not cover the S-300 sale from Russia.
"Purchasing S-300 missiles is out of jurisdiction of the recently adopted U.N. Security Council resolution," Aragchi said, adding that the U.N. resolution only contains seven restrictions and now "paves a way for economic cooperation with several countries that had no ties with the Islamic Republic [of Iran] because of sanctions."
The U.N. unanimously agreed to the resolution, ensuring that all sanctions would be lifted in 10 years if Iran fulfills all conditions of the agreement. Sanctions will be eased once the International Atomic Energy Agency submits a report confirming that Tehran is complying with the terms of the deal.
However, Iran’s insistence that the deal for five divisions of the missile defense system, which was first agreed with Russia in 2007 for $800 million, could affect whether the U.S. Congress approves the deal or not. Many members of Congress believed that Iran would be prohibited from obtaining conventional weapons for five years and missile technology for eight.
Iran paid $166 million as a deposit for the S-300 but never received the system because of additional sanctions imposed in 2010. Russia signed a decree accepting the ban on all weapons sales to Iran, and Tehran received the deposit back.