Iranian parallels


Results of the NATO summit in Riga show that NATO is still concerned about the nuclear programs in Iran. The US, as well as representatives of France, Germany and UK still insist on the draft UN resolution implying prohibition of sale of missile and nuclear technologies to Iran, freezing the military Iranian accounts and implementation of limitations on issue of visas for top-ranking Iranian officials related to the missile and nuclear sectors.

Russia and China are against such sanctions, although they are concerned about the nuclear programs of Tehran too. Moscow and Beijing have something to lose if the sanctions against Iran proposed by NATO are approved. China is interested in Iranian oil supplies. Russia is building the Bushehr nuclear power station worth about $1 billion in Iran and has also signed agreements on supplies of armament worth not less than $700 million and has already started fulfillment of this project.

It was reported recently that supplies of air defense missile systems Tor-M1 to Iran already began. These air defense missile systems will cover the most important state and military objects, first of all, the nuclear ones in Isfahan, Bushehr, Tehran and in the east of the country. It was reported that Iranian servicemen that would operate Tor-M1 were already trained in Russia.

According to open press, the Russian-Iranian contract on supply of 29 air defense missile systems Tor-M1 to Tehran worth $700 million was signed at the end of 2005.

Mikhail Dmitriev, Director of the Federal Service for Military Technological Cooperation, has already announced that there are no grounds for revision of the contract on supply of Tor-M1 to Iran by Russia and the contract will be fulfilled.

On November 1, Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov told journalists in Oslo that Tor-M1 systems to be supplied to Iran had a limited application and could not be used in offensive operations.

Meanwhile, according to experts, Tor-M1 is a tactical all-weather air defense missile system of the fifth generation intended for fulfillment of air defense tasks on the battalion level. This is the only system in the world that can detect and identify up to 48 targets simultaneously and attack two targets simultaneously flying at altitudes from 20 to 6,000 meters flying at a speed of up to 700 meters per second at distances from 1.5 to 12 kilometers. The manufacturer of Tor is Izhevsk-based electromechanical plant Kupol belonging to Almaz-Antei.

Tor-M1 is intended for coverage of important administrative, economic and military objects and first lines of the ground formations from blows of anti-radar and cruise missiles, unmanned aerial vehicles, gliding air bombs, airplanes and helicopters including those using stealth technology.

Because Americans do not give up their plans of militarily solving the Iranian problem, supplies of Tor systems from Russia will evidently be handy for Iran and will strengthen its defense capability.