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Moscow slams U.S. sanctions against two Russian state companies

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Moscow has condemned a move by the United States to impose sanctions on two state-owned Russian companies over their cooperation with Iran, Russia's Foreign Ministry said Friday in a statement.
MOSCOW/WASHINGTON, August 4 (RIA Novosti) - Moscow has condemned a move by the United States to impose sanctions on two state-owned Russian companies over their cooperation with Iran, Russia's Foreign Ministry said Friday in a statement.

The ministry said the U.S. State Department had announced earlier in the day the introduction of sanctions against Russia's state arms exporter Rosoboronexport and state-owned aircraft manufacturer Sukhoi.

"Our companies stand accused of violating the Iran Nonproliferation Act of 2000," the statement said. "We consider these actions by the U.S. State Department unacceptable."

"Russian companies cooperating with other countries in the military-technical sphere are acting in strict compliance with the rules of international law, as well as Russian law, including Russia's obligations on nuclear nonproliferation and export control," it said.

Some countries, led by the United States, suspect Tehran of pursuing a secret weapons program. Iran has consistently stated that it only wants nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.

Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov said in May that Russia was ready to sell weapons to any country that had not violated international regulations and intended to strictly observe the conditions of each arms deal.

"Russia always meets it obligations under contracts, and not only in the military sphere," he said, adding that Russia will also honor its commitments to supply Tor-M1 air defense systems to Iran.

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