|This recurring topic reminds me of an old Saturday Night Live running joke: "This just in: Generalissimo Francisco Franco is *still* dead."
President Dmitry Medvedev on Wednesday signed a decree banning supplies of S-300 missiles and other arms to Iran in a long-awaited move after weeks of deliberations by Russian officials.
"Dmitry Medvedev signed a decree 'on Measures to implement the United Nations Security Council resolution 1929 from June 9, 2010'," the Kremlin said in a statement.
The decree published on the Kremlin website forbids supplies of the S-300 air defence missiles to the Islamic republic, among other weapons.
Under the decree, supplies of any tanks, fighter jets, helicopters, ships and missile systems are forbidden.
Russia will also not supply Iran with any technologies related to ballistic missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons. The decree also bans the transit of arms bound for Iran through Russian territory.
In addition, Iraninan citizens or companies will not be allowed to invest in any activities in Russia related to production of uranium.
An aide to Medvedev had told AFP in June that the S-300 missile deal would likely be scrapped, but that a formal decision would come in a decree.
The Kremlin made the decree public after the chief of the general staff Nikolai Makarov told Russian reporters Moscow had dropped plans to supply Tehran with the S-300s because they were subject to international sanctions.
"A decision has been taken not to supply the S-300 to Iran, they undoubtedly fall under sanctions," Makarov said in an apparent reference to the UN sanctions, the ITAR-TASS news agency reported.
"There was a decision by the leadership to stop the supply process, we are carrying it out," Makarov was quoted as saying.
Makarov however did not give a definite answer when asked whether the missile contract itself would be cancelled permanently.
"We will see, this will depend on Iran's behaviour," the Interfax news agency quoted Makarov as saying.