Syria: S-300 systems enough to respond to Israel's threat
IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency
Tehran, Sept 30, IRNA -- Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem said Sunday that deliveries of Russian S-300 air defense systems were a 'timely step.'
'It is a system which is defensive in its nature rather than offensive, and it is intended for the defense of the Syrian airspace. If we analyze the importance of the Syrian airspace's protection, we will see that it reflects security and stability, but not a war. I would like to note that it is a very timely step and we are very grateful to Russia for its efforts,' the minister said in an interview, Sputnik news agency reported.
Moallem also stressed that the systems have sufficient capacities to respond to Israeli threats to the country.
'In any case, S-300 is enough to respond to these threats,' the minister told the RT broadcaster, answering a question about Israeli threats in connection to Iran's presence on the Syrian territory.
The minister stressed that the Iranian servicemen were deployed to the Syrian territory on legitimate grounds and in an advisory capacity.
'The Syrian-Iranian relations are not a bargaining issue. These relations are based on the decisions of two sovereign states, defending their independent decision,' the minister underlined.
He stressed that he highly appreciated the decision of Russian President Vladimir Putin to provide these systems to Syria.
Russia decided to provide Syria with the S-300 air defense systems after a Russian Il-20 plane was downed by a missile launched by Syria's forces earlier this month. The Syrian system was targeting Israeli F-16 jets that were attacking the facilities in the Syrian province of Latakia. According to the Russian Defense Ministry, Israel notified Russia of its operation only a minute before the attack.
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