CATF Reports Nov. 17, 2016, 2:23pm

During a parliamentary visit to Tehran, a U.S. sanctioned Russian Federal Council member and head of the defense and security committee, Viktor Ozerov, told reporters that talks were underway between Russia and Iran over an arms deal thought to be worth $10 billion. If completed, the deal would see Moscow deliver its famed T-90 tanks, artillery systems, planes and helicopters to the Islamic republic. The talks are still in an early stage, but Ozerov said that “the ground has been prepared.”  

And while talks of a possible deal between Russia and Iran are underway, any arrangement will face significant hurdles and will require years to be completed. Although the United Nations partially lifted an embargo on arms sales to Tehran following the announcement of the Iran Deal in 2015, deliveries of weapons to the Islamic republic still require UN Security Council approval. Until this stipulation expires in 2020, any action on the $10 billion deal will likely be limited to talks.

That has not assuaged the U.S. or its allies though. Only weeks from the President-Elect taking the Oval Office, it remains to be seen how a Trump administration that has promised to renegotiate the Iran Deal and restore relations with Moscow will handle increased cooperation between Russia and Iran. For his part, Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman noted that Israel “obviously” is not pleased by the talks, especially coming only months after Russia delivered an advanced S-300 missile defense system to Iran which was promptly showcased during Tehran’s Army Day parade. And while reports of concern from Washington have emerged, managing the future of U.S. relations with Russia and Iran during a period of increased cooperation, including a potential $10 billion deal, will fall firmly on the shoulders of the incoming Trump administration.  

From Reuters:

“Russia and Iran are in talks over an arms deal worth around $10 billion that would see Moscow deliver T-90 tanks, artillery systems, planes and helicopters to Tehran, a senior Russian senator said on Monday, the RIA news agency reported.

Viktor Ozerov, head of the defense and security committee in the Russian upper house of parliament, or Federation Council, told reporters talks on the potential deal were under way during a parliamentary visit to Iran, RIA said.”

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