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December 21, 2008

Russia sells Iran missiles

POLITICS - Russia has begun delivering S-300 air defence systems to Iran which could help repel any Israeli and United States air strikes on its nuclear sites, Iranian news reported today. Russian sources have confirmed they have a S-300 missile contract with Iran.

Right: A Russian S-300 missile launcher.

"After few years of talks with Russia ... now the S-300 system is being delivered to Iran," says Email Kosari, deputy head of parliament's Foreign Affairs and National Security committee.

The United States, its European allies and Israel claim Iran is seeking to build nuclear arms under the cover of a civilian atomic energy program. Iran denies the claims.

Israel's insistence that Iran must not be allowed to develop an atomic bomb has fueled speculation that the Jewish state, widely assumed to have the Middle East's only nuclear arsenal, could mount its own pre-emptive strikes on Iran and spark a religious war that would engulf all of the Middle East.

Right: A S-300 missile being launched.

Russia is not alone in its dealing with Iran. For the past 30 years China has been selling Iran missile technology, the kind of action that makes folks in Washington and Jerusalem very nervous.

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