Russia not to allow new arms exports restrictios : Putin

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Moscow, Nov 1 (UNI) President Vladimir Putin has said Russia will not allow other countries to put restrictions on its arms exports.

''We cannot and will not take into account any attempts to impose other restrictions based on unilateral or politicized evaluations,'' Putin said yesterday addressing a session of the Military-Technical Cooperation Commission.

He also said deliveries of Russian weapons were aimed exclusively at increasing the defence capability of the countries receiving them and at maintaining their stability.

''It is an absolute priority for us. Russia has strictly observed, is observing, and will strictly observe all international commitments in the military technical sphere, in particular, the export control regime,'' Putin was quoted as saying by the RIA Novosti news agency.

The US has repeatedly called on Russia to stop arms deliveries to countries whose political regimes Washington disapproves of.

Last week, US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Nicholas Burns urged the Russian government to stop arms deliveries to Iran.

Russia and Iran concluded a contract in 2005 for deliveries of Tor-M1s.

Tor-M1 is a high-precision missile system designed to destroy manned or unmanned aircraft, as well as cruise missiles flying at an altitude of up to 10 km. Russia subsequently supplied 29 Tor systems to Iran for 700 million dollars.

US State Secretary Condoleezza Rice today criticized Russia's weapons deliveries to Syria.

Russia has repeatedly said arms deals with Syria do not alter the balance of forces in the Middle East region, which were fully in line with international commitments in the sphere.

Another country, the US would not like to receive weapons from Russia, is Venezuela which recently bought over 50 military helicopters and 24 Su-30MK2 fighters from Russia, as well as 100,000 Kalashnikov assault rifles.

UNI

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