Russia is reported to have started delivering S-300 surface-to-air missiles to Iran, under a deal opposed by Israel, the US and Saudi Arabia. Iran’s foreign ministry spokesman Hossein Jaberi-Ansari said “the first stage of the contract has been implemented”. It is not yet clear how many missiles may have been delivered.

The controversial contract got the go-ahead after international sanctions on Iran were lifted last year. The diplomatic breakthrough involved a deal over Iran’s atomic programme, imposing new international safeguards aimed at preventing Iran from developing nuclear weapons. Iran has insisted its nuclear programme is for purely peaceful purposes and denies seeking to build a nuclear bomb. READ MORE