Amid international outcry over the Islamic Republic’s supply of drones and ballistic missiles for the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Kiev says Tehran plans to ship even more arms to Russia.
According to reports by Ukranian intelligence agencies, the Islamic Republic is set to deliver more than 200 Shahed-136 and Arash-2 kamikaze drones, and Mohajer-6 reconnaissance and combat UAVs later in November.
“It is known that the supply of these UAVs will be carried out over the Caspian Sea to the port of Astrakhan,” the Ukrainian intelligence agency said, adding that “The drones will arrive disassembled. Later, on the territory of Russia, they will be assembled, repainted and applied with Russian markings,” the report says. Russia applies its own markings to the Shahed-131 and the Shahed-136, dubbing them the Geran-1 and Geran-2 respectively – apparently to obscure their Iranian origins.
According to a report by CNN, Tehran is preparing to send approximately 1,000 additional weapons, including surface-to-surface short range ballistic missiles and more attack drones to Russia to use in its war against Ukraine.
The Paris-based dissident organization National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) -- affiliated with exiled People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) -- accused the Iranian regime of supplying Vladimir Putin’s army with more than 3,500 drones.
Ukraine, however, said that roughly 400 drones have already been used by Russia, from a total supply of approximately 2,000 weapons. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy announced the downing of 223 drones produced by Iran’s regime.
On Tuesday, the US State Department Spokesperson Ned Price said Washington will “continue to vigorously enforce all US sanctions on both the Russian and Iranian arms trade to make it harder for Iran to sell these weapons to Russia.”