Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov said on Saturday Russia has not dropped its plans to supply Syria with Yakhont missiles.
"The contract [on supplies] is in progress," Serdyukov told journalists in Vladivostok, Russia's Far East.
Russia earlier announced it would honor a 2007 contract on the delivery of several Bastion anti-ship missile systems armed with SS-N-26 Yakhont supersonic cruise missiles to Syria, despite efforts by Israel and the United States to stop the deal.
The Yakhont missile has a range of 300 kilometers, the capacity to carry a 200-kilogram warhead and the unique ability of being able to cruise several meters above the water surface, making it difficult to detect and intercept.
Israeli authorities have expressed a strong concern over the increase of Syrian defensive potential, as well as over a threat of transferring weapons to Lebanese or Palestinian radicals. Washington also said the deal could destabilize the region.
VLADIVOSTOK, February 26 (RIA Novosti)
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The growing outright rivalry between the United States and China gives Russia more foreign policy weight, enabling it to assume the role of a balancer. So far it has been doing so rather skillfully. Today it may participate in a joint naval exercise with China that Beijing positions as outwardly anti-American. But tomorrow it can team up with the naval forces of the Old World.