AFP: Russia has begun deliveries of the Tor-M1 air defence rocket system to Iran, Russian news agencies quoted military industry sources as saying on Friday. AFP, Moscow, Nov. 24 – Russia has begun deliveries of the Tor-M1 air defence rocket system to Iran, Russian news agencies quoted military industry sources as saying on Friday.
Deliveries of the Tor-M1 have begun. The first systems have already been delivered to Tehran, ITAR-TASS quoted an unnamed, high-ranking source as saying.
The news came as the UN Security Council continued to debate possible sanctions against Iran over the Islamic republics controversial nuclear programme.
Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov has defended the contract for 29 rocket systems signed in December last year, saying that the Tor-M1 serves purely defensive purposes.
ITAR-TASS reported that the rockets were to be deployed around Irans nuclear sites, including the still incomplete, Russian-built atomic power station at Bushehr.
The United States has pressed Russia to halt military sales to Iran.
In August, Washington announced sanctions against several companies, including Russian arms exporter Rosoboronexport, for supplying technology to Iran that could allegedly be used to develop missile technology and weapons of mass destruction.
Under the sanctions no US company can deal with foreign companies on the sanctions list for two years.
A spokesman for Rosoboronexport contacted by AFP would not confirm or deny the reports, which were also issued by the Interfax news agency.
The Tor-M1 is a low to medium-altitude missile fired from a tracked vehicle against airplanes, helicopters and other airborne targets.