Russia is reportedly contemplating working with Iran on weapons development, which would include forming a joint production line for lethal drones, according to NBC News, who cited senior US officials.
“This partnership poses a threat not just to Ukraine but to Iran’s neighbors in the region,” said one senior official, according to NBC.
This was later confirmed by US national security council spokesperson John Kirby, who said on Friday that the US had seen reports that Russia and Iran are considering setting up a drone assembly line in Russia.
“Russia is seeking to collaborate with Iran in areas like weapons development, training,” Kirby said. “Iran has become Russia’s top military backer.”
He added, “Russia’s been using Iranian drones to strike energy infrastructure, depriving millions of Ukrainians of power, heat, critical services. People in Ukraine today are dying as a result of Iran’s actions.”
Ukrainian military officials also confirmed that Russia had used unmanned aerial systems, and that Ukrainian military has shot down at least 10 of them in the regions of Kherson, Mykolaiv, and Odesa.
The Guardian reported that the UK’s ambassador to the UN, Barbara Woodward, said on Friday that Iran had transferred hundreds of drones to Russia since August.
Iran has denied the accusations and said that any Iranian-made drones that Russia is using was bought before they invaded Ukraine.
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: WASHINGTON POST
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