Iranian Diplomacy- According to new updates, preparations have been made for the delivery of Su-30SM version of Sukhoi fighter aircrafts to Iran in the near future.
Member of the parliamentary national security committee Heshmatollah Falahatpisheh has told Mizan, the organ of Iran’s Judiciary, that the delivery would have significant impact on the development of Iran’s defense industry. “The Sukhoi fighters enjoy many capabilities that will doubtlessly push the country’s defense goals,” Mizan quoted him as saying.
Defense deals between Iran and Russia have been taken to a new level in recent years, where Iran has undertaken a series of measures to import military equipment.
Purchase of military equipment is a necessity in today’s world and Iran is buying several Sukhoi fighter aircrafts from Russia in accordance with the contracts and negotiations between the sides, Falahatpisheh said.
The Su-30SM is a multirole fighter for all-weather, air-to-air and air-to-surface deep interdiction missions. The aircraft features an autopilot ability at all flight stages including low- or cruise altitude flight in terrain-following radar mode.
The fighter jet is capable of missions with a range of 1500 km, which increase to 3000 km with an added fuel reserve. An aerial refueling system increases the range to 5,200 km. With a normal fuel reserve, it can fly for almost 5.4 hours, which increases to 10 hours in cruise flights.
The fighter also features an electronic warfare system. It can also carry up to 8 tons of advanced weapons, which includes machine gun, various types of bombs, air-to-air missiles, as well as supersonic anti-ship missiles. The supersonic missiles, called Onyx, are capable of a 120-300km range.
The first SM-30 Sukhoi fighters were delivered to the Russian defense ministry in 2012. The fighter aircraft is comparable with the American F15, F16, and F18 falcons and provides for all the operational requirements in a country as vast as Iran. With the possession of Sukhoi fighters, Iran hopes to enjoy measurable superiority in aerial combat.
In late November 2016, Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehghan told a large gathering of Basij, the militia arm of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps, that Tehran was open to negotiation with any country able to supply for the country’s defense needs, except for the US and Israel. “The purchase of Sukhoi is on the agenda. However, we also want to transfer the technology,” he added.
Deputy Chairman of the national security and foreign policy committee of the parliament Abolfazl Hassan-Beigi also told Mizan that Iran pursues technical development through domestic research and cooperation with foreign researchers to use their experiences and achievements. Commenting on the amicable relations between Iran and Russia in recent years, he said the Russian also see themselves in need for consultation with Iran. Saying cooperation in nuclear, defense, and missiles programs has led to mutual trust between the two countries, Hassan-Beigi reiterated that any aerial cooperation would benefit both sides.
Hassan-Beigi went on to say that Iran’s seeks products that could improve its military and passenger air fleets, adding that the new purchase could have a great impact on the experiences of Iran’s aviation experts. He noted that after Iran bought S300 defense system from Russia, several indigenous missile systems have been improved and integrated with the Russian system.
*The article is an abridged translation of a Persian article originally published on Principlist website Alef.