Vladimir Putin, Hassan Rouhani
Vladimir Putin, Hassan Rouhani Reuters

An aide to Russian President Vladimir Putin told Russian media on Thursday that delivery of the advanced S-300 anti-missile defense system to Iran is beginning.

Speaking to TASS news agency, the aide Vladimir Kozhin said "the contract is being implemented, (deliveries of S-300s) are starting."

In mid November Iran said it would receive the controversial shipment of advanced air defense systems by the end of the year, and late last month Iranian Ambassador to Russia Mehdi Sanai claimed the first deliveries had come in.

According to TASS the S-300PMU-2 configuration of the missile system is being shipped, which reportedly has a range of 195 kilometers (121 miles).

S-300 is designed to intercept aircraft and cruise missiles, and its more advanced models such as the S-300PMU-2 can also take down up to medium range ballistic missiles.

The sale of the S-300, originally conducted in 2007, has been repeatedly delayed due to Western pressure given that UN nuclear sanctions ban the delivery to Iran, the worlds leading state sponsor of terror, over its controversial nuclear program.

But in April, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree lifting a ban on the delivery of the S-300 systems to Iran, explaining that his decision was motivated by Iran's drive to find a solution in talks over its nuclear program.

After the nuclear deal was reached, Russia’s deputy foreign minister Mikhail Bogdanov said in August his country and Iran had formally reached a deal for Moscow to deliver Tehran advanced S-300 missile systems.

Part of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report on Iran's nuclear program was released Wednesday, revealing the Islamic regime indeed has worked to build nuclear weapons at least until 2009. As part of the nuclear deal, the IAEA will allow Iran to inspect its own covert nuclear sites such as Parchin.

Many have raised concerns that the S-300 will make possible attempts by Israel to strike Iran's nuclear program more difficult, a great concern given that the West already promised in the deal to protect Iran from Israeli sabotage.