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Sunday, March 5, 2017

Iran says S-300 system operational

Iranian state television reported on Saturday that the advanced S-300 air defense system, which the Islamic Republic bought from Russia, is now operational.

"The S-300 air defense system has been tested ... in the presence of government and military officials," the Iranian report said, according to the AFP news agency.

It added that the test at a desert base had seen several targets, including a ballistic missile and a drone, intercepted.

Air defense commander General Farzad Esmaili told the television that a domestically manufactured air defense system dubbed Bavar 373 which was "more advanced than the S-300" would be tested very soon.

"The S-300 is a system that is deadly for our enemies and which makes our skies more secure," he claimed.

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree in 2015 lifting a ban on the delivery of the S-300 to Iran, explaining that his decision was motivated by Iran's drive to find a solution in talks over its nuclear program.

Despite the lifting of the ban, the sale had been repeatedly delayed due to Western pressure that UN nuclear sanctions ban the delivery to Iran. Russia delivered the missiles last year.
Last August, state television aired footage of the system being installed around the Fordo nuclear site in a mountain near Qom, south of the capital.  READ MORE