His visit is a violation of international travel ban; For second time, Russia denies meeting
In the same week that Russia delivered its first shipment for of S-300 air defense missile system to Iran, Qassem Soleimani, the head of the al-Quds Force of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps, secretly met with Russian President Vladimir Putin and military officials, including Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu in Moscow.
The report of his visit was released on Friday by international media outlets and newspapers confirming that Soleimani has once again violated a travel ban by the United Nations Security Council. Reuter’s cited a “senior Iranian security official” stating “General Soleimani traveled to Moscow last night to discuss issues including the delivery of S-300s and further military cooperation.” The ban was placed in 2007 on high-ranking Iranian military officials due to Iran’s nuclear program, specifically its ballistic missile program.
Soleimani has violated the travel ban twice, both times meeting with high-ranking officials in Russia. Russian officials have both times denied any meeting took place.
In July, Soleimani reportedly met with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The leaders reportedly discussed regional issues as well as plans to proceed with the delivery of S-300 missile system. Soleimani additionally met with Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu.
On Monday, Russia delivered the first shipment of the S-300 air defense system to Iran, the delivery confirmed by Iran’s Foreign Ministry. The delivery of the entire system is expected to be completed by mid-2016.