SANCTIONS AGAINST ROSOBORONEXPORT AS RETRIBUTION FOR PERSISTENCE IN THE MATTER OF IRAN
Invoking sanctions against Rosoboronexport, the US Administration is trying to punish Moscow for its independent foreign policy.
On October 23, the US Administration introduced sanctions against Rosoboronexport and twelve other non-US companies for violation of the American bill banning proliferation of weapons of mass destruction to Iran, Syria, and North Korea. All American governmental organizations are expected to stay away from the companies on the black list over the next two years which means no interaction with them, no procurement from them, and so on. This particular bill has been in force since the late 1990’s, and this is the third time Rosoboronexport finds itself on the receiving end. Vyacheslav Davidenko of Rosoboronexport called the American sanctions “crooked competition”, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov appraised them as “illegitimate”.
The latest American black list includes no other Russian companies. It makes it different from the list back in 2006 when sanctions analogous to those applied to Rosoboronexport were also used against the Tula Design Room and Sukhoi. The former was suspected of an anti-tank weapons deal with Iran, the latter of repairing Iranian SU-24s. These days, Rosoboronexport has no major deals with Tehran under way. Sources in Russian Technologies reckon therefore that the American sanctions are Washington’s reaction to the Russian-Syrian arms contracts. “These American sanctions are ritualistic. They will have no effect on business contacts between the Americans and Rosoboronexport via its head company Russian Technologies,” Ruslan Pukhov of the Center for Analysis of Strategies and Techniques said.
Commenting on the sanctions, Lavrov attributed them to Moscow’s persistence and reluctance to accept the American approach to the Iranian problem. Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov visited Tehran last week and said the group of international brokers (The Six) lacked a consensus over the idea of stiffening sanctions against Iran promoted by the United States and countries of the West. In September, the UN Security Council adopted Resolution 1835. Drawn by Russia, the document stipulated no new sanctions against Iran. Rajab Safarov, Director of the Center for Studies of Modern Iran, said the sanctions against Rosoboronexport were Washington’s attempt to punish Russia for independent foreign policy with regard to Iran.