Topic: Iran's nuclear program
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- Russia 'will abide by UN resolution' over S-300 missile deal with Iran
- Contradictions abound over Moscow's intentions toward Iran
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A Kremlin source said on Friday the sale of S-300 air defense systems fall under the new UN Security Council's sanctions against Tehran, but the Russian foreign minister said it was up to the president to make the final decision.
Resolution 1929, adopted on Wednesday, imposes a fourth round of sanctions on Iran over its nuclear program, and includes tougher financial controls and an expanded arms embargo.
"The S-300s fall under these sanctions," the source said, adding that these weapons cannot be supplied to Iran.
Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov responded immediately to the statement saying the issue could be resolved only through a decree issued by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev.
"A decree will be prepared to determine which deliveries and which weapons do not fall under the resolution," Lavrov said, adding that "no one had been asked to interpret the provisions of the resolution," until the decree was complete.
Russia initially said the delivery of S-300 surface-to-air missile systems to Iran would not be affected by new UN sanctions against Iran since they are not included in the UN Register of Conventional Arms.
Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said earlier on Friday that Russian experts would thoroughly study all aspects of the sale of S-300 to Iran and adhere strictly to the provisions of the UN resolution.
Moscow signed a contract on supplying Iran with at least five S-300 systems in December 2005. However, the contract's implementation has so far been delayed.
The United States and Israel, which have not ruled out an attack on Iran over its nuclear program, have called on Russia not to deliver the missiles to Tehran.
MOSCOW, June 11 (RIA Novosti)
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