Su-30 Deal Could Be Finalized This Year

Su-30 Deal Could Be Finalized This Year Su-30 Deal Could Be Finalized This Year

The contract to sell advanced Russian Sukhoi fighter jets to Iran could be finalized by the end of the year, Fars News Agency reported on Saturday citing media sources.

The Su-30 is a twin-engine, two-seat super-maneuverable fighter aircraft developed by Russia's Sukhoi Aviation Corporation. It is a multirole fighter for all-weather, air-to-air and air-to-surface deep interdiction missions. Tehran and Moscow started talks on the supply of the Russian-made Sukhoi-30 fighter jets to Iran on March 26.

The talks were held on the sidelines of the MAKS 2015 air show in the town of Zhukovsky near Moscow, which was attended by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Iranian Vice President for Science and Technology Sorena Sattari.

"Today, we visited different sections of the exhibition and the fighter jets' air show for three and a half hours accompanied by Mr. Putin, which was a rare opportunity," Sattari told FNA at the time.

Asked if the issue of purchasing Russia's Sukhoi jets was raised during the visit, Sattari said, "We spoke about it but we didn't discuss purchasing them and talks were mostly focused on the technological issues."

Other Iranian officials have also talked about the deal, but have not revealed more details.

After media reports revealed serious talks between Tehran and Moscow on the purchase of fighter jets, US Department of State Undersecretary for Political Affairs Thomas Shannon said last Tuesday that Washington would use its veto power in the United Nations Security Council to block the possible sales of the aircraft to Iran.

"The sale of Su-30 fighter aircraft is prohibited under UNSC Resolution 2231 without the approval of the Security Council and we would block the approval of any sale of fighter aircraft under the restrictions," Shannon said, referring to a resolution adopted to endorse the July 2015 Iran nuclear deal.

But Mikhail Oliyanov, the head of Russian Foreign Ministry's Administration for Security and Disarmament, said Moscow can sell Su-30 fighters and T-90 tanks to Iran as there are no international obstacles.

"Resolution 2231 has not banned the sale of such military equipment to Iran," he said on the same day. His remarks were echoed by Ramezanali Sobhani, the head of Iran-Russia Parliamentary Friendship Group, who underlined on Wednesday that "the purchase of Su-30 fighters and T-90 tanks are within the framework of defensive-security issues and no country, including the US, is entitled to interfere".