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Russia threatens payback if Iran sanctions affect its interests

© RIA Novosti . Ruslan Krivobok / Go to the mediabankThe Russian Foreign Ministry
The Russian Foreign Ministry  - Sputnik International
The Russian Foreign Ministry warned on Wednesday of retaliatory measures if new sanctions against Iran affected Russian companies or individuals.

The Russian Foreign Ministry warned on Wednesday of retaliatory measures if new sanctions against Iran affected Russian companies or individuals.

The United Nations Security Council approved on Wednesday a new package of economic sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program.

"We cannot possibly ignore signals reaching us about the intention of some of our partners...to start considering additional, tougher restrictive measures against Iran than those provided for under the UN Security Council resolution," the ministry said in a statement.

The ministry said it was especially concerned by the prospect of "extraterritorial sanctions" - sanctions imposed on companies and individuals from third countries.

"Such decisions, if they affect Russian legal entities or individuals, are fraught with retaliatory measures," it said.

It said such moves were at odds with the principles of cooperation adopted at the Iran Six and the UN Security Council. The six countries involved in international negotiations with Tehran on its nuclear program, the United States, Britain, France, Germany, China and Russia, all voted for the resolution.

The new sanctions are likely to prohibit the delivery of Russian S-300s surface-to-air missile systems to the Islamic Republic.

However, a senior Russian lawmaker said in late May new sanctions against Iran would not stop Russia from fulfilling its S-300 contract.

Moscow signed a contract on supplying Iran with at least five S-300 systems in December 2005, but its implementation has so far been delayed.

The United States and Israel have called on Russia not to deliver the missiles to Iran. The West is also concerned by Russia's role in helping Iran to build its first nuclear power plant in Bushehr.

The Foreign Ministry statement said the resolution left wide scope for economic cooperation with Iran, and said that Russia was particularly interested in the construction of light water nuclear reactors in the Islamic Republic.

The fourth round of sanctions will include tougher financial controls and an expanded arms embargo. They also impose an asset ban and a travel freeze on more than three dozen companies and individuals.

Twelve members of the council's 15 members voted for the resolution, which was sponsored by the five permanent members of the Security Council - the United States, Britain, France, China and Russia. Turkey and Brazil voted against the resolution, and Lebanon abstained.

U.S. Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice praised the vote as a decisive move against Iran's nuclear program, which she called a "grave threat to international security."

"Until the world's concerns with Iran's nuclear defiance are fully resolved, we must work together to ensure that the sanctions in this resolution are fully and firmly implemented," she said.

Just before the vote, Brazilian and Turkish envoys explained why they opposed the measure. Brazil's ambassador said they would send the wrong signal.

Turkey and Brazil have brokered a deal in which Iran is to swap its uranium in Turkey for fuel to use in a Tehran research reactor.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said earlier this week that Tehran would pull out of international talks on its nuclear program if the sanctions were approved. Speaking in Tajikistan after the sanctions were adopted, he dismissed the resolution as a "used tissue that should be thrown into the waste bin."

MOSCOW, June 9 (RIA Novosti) 


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