Iran is expected to supply Russia with “hundreds” of drones, some of which will be able to carry weapons for use in the conflict in Ukraine. Iran is also preparing to train Russian forces on operating these drones as early as July.

The Iranian government is preparing to supply Russia with up to several hundred unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), including UAVs that can carry weapons on a shortened timetable, according to the intelligence report by US Officials to the White House.

“Our information further indicates that Iran is preparing to train Russian forces to use these UAVs, with initial training session slated for as soon as early July. It’s unclear whether Iran has delivered any of these UAVs to Russia already,” Jake Sullivan, the national security advisor, remarked to the media at the press conference held at the White House on Monday.

The information that Sullivan relayed to journalists was based on “intelligence” that was just made public, according to a representative for the White House National Security Council who talked to the media organization.

According to Sullivan, the intelligence report said it was unclear whether Iran had handed any of the drones to Russia at this point. However, he observed that Houthi rebels in Yemen had already utilized Iran’s drones to carry out attacks on Saudi Arabia, the report revealed.

However, the spokesperson for the Iranian Foreign Minister, Nasser Kanaani, did not refute the assertion made by the US. Instead, Kanaani said in a statement, “Iran’s cooperation with Russia in some sophisticated technologies dates to before the Russia-Ukraine war.”

The fact that Iran is providing the drones, according to Sullivan’s argument, is evidence that Russia’s strikes against Ukraine over the last week are occurring at the “severe” expense of diminishing Russia’s domestic weapons stockpile.

A day before US President Joe Biden was slated to make his inaugural trip to the Middle East since taking office, including trips to Israel and Saudi Arabia, news broke that Iran had furnished Russia with drones. It is anticipated that the operations of Iran in the area and its nuclear program would be a primary focus of the diplomatic conversation.

Putin in Iran

TEHRAN. Russia’s Vladimir Putin With the President of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. (Source: Kremlin.ruCC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons)

Earlier Tuesday, Iranian state media announced that Putin would visit Tehran the following week to negotiate to strengthen economic relations. Putin will participate in a trilateral meeting with the rulers of Iran and Turkey during his visit to Tehran. These meetings will trail the so-called Astana format of conferences for discussions regarding Syria.

After President Joe Biden’s trip to Israel and Saudi Arabia this week, Russian President Vladimir Putin is scheduled to travel to Iran, where the two leaders are expected to address Iran’s nuclear program as well as its destabilizing operations in the region.

During the trip to Tehran, Putin will also hold a separate meeting with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, according to Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov to the press.

Perks of UAVs

Bayraktar Akıncı SİHA (UAV) Teknofest 2019. (Source: Talha IşıkCC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons)

Both sides of the conflict in Ukraine have made effective use of unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, for a range of functions, such as the discharge of rockets from a range, the delivery of tiny explosives to targets, and the execution of surveillance for fire units and ground forces, the report said.

The Bayraktar armed combat UAVs built in Turkey have proven to be very effective for the Ukrainian military and other armed forces. The US and other allied nations have also provided Ukraine with many smaller drones.

Iran was assisting in smuggling weapons to Russia so that Russia could obtain munitions and other military gear from Iraq. This was done with the assistance of Iranian smuggling networks.

Russia has received rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs), anti-tank missiles, and rocket launcher systems manufactured in Brazil as the country’s operation has fumbled over the past month. These weapons were shipped from Iraq.

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An Iranian-made Bavar 373 missile system comparable to the Russian S-300 has also been donated to Moscow by the authorities in Tehran, who also handed back an S-300, as per the source who helped organize the conveyance of the missile systems.

Since the beginning of the conflict, the West has imposed unprecedented restrictions on Russian firms; in response, Tehran has stated on multiple occasions that it is willing to form long-term commercial ties with Russian companies.

According to the Iran-Russia Joint Chamber of Commerce, Iran’s shipments to Russia have surged since the onset of the crisis in Ukraine.