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June 23, 2013 2:18 pm

Report: Russia Offers Iran Alternative to S-300 Missile System

avatar by Zach Pontz

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Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his then-Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev in 2011. Photo: FPM.

Russia is attempting to avoid a multi-billion dollar lawsuit from Iran over a failed deal to supply S-300 missile systems by offering an alternative defense system, the Russian Kommersant daily reported Saturday.

The newspaper, citing unnamed sources in the Russian arms trade industry,  said the new offer on the table is for the Antei-2500, aka S-300VM. The missile defense system can simultaneously destroy up to 24 aircraft within a range of 200 kilometers or intercept up to 16 ballistic missiles.

Iran signed a contract with Russia in 2007 for five S-300 missile defense systems but the deal was scrapped in 2010 by then-Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, who was unilaterally expanding on sanctions against Iran imposed by the UN Security Council.

Iran filed a $4-billion lawsuit against Russia in the international arbitration court in Geneva, which is currently pending review.

Russia has been unable to have the lawsuit dismissed.

The country is already exporting the Antei-2500, having delivered two missile systems to Venezuela earlier this year, and sees the system as a good replacement for the S-300 system.

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