Russia encounters technical problems with Iranian-made drones, US says
Russia encountered technical problems with Iranian-made drones acquired from Tehran this month for use in its war with Ukraine, according to Biden administration officials.
The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the U.S. intelligence assessment, did not detail the many failures.”
They added that the United States believes that the multi-day delivery of Mohajer-6 and Shahed series unmanned aerial vehicles this month is likely part of a Russian plan to acquire hundreds of Iranian drones.
The Associated Press reported last week that Russia had recently obtained hundreds of Iranian drones capable of being used in its war against Ukraine despite US warnings to Tehran not to ship them. The Washington Post first reported that Russia had encountered technical problems with Iranian drones.
Russian operators continue to receive training in Iran on how to use these systems, which can conduct air-to-ground attacks, electronic warfare and targeting, on the battlefield in Ukraine, officials said.
The Biden administration released satellite images last month indicating that Russian officials visited Kashan airfield on June 8 and July 5 to view the Iranian drones. At the time, White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan claimed the administration had information that the Iranian government was preparing to supply Russia with several hundred drones.
Faced with economic sanctions and limits on its supply chains due to its invasion of Ukraine, Russia is looking to Iran as a key partner and arms supplier. A Russian plane was loaded with UAV equipment at an airfield in Iran for several days this month before the weaponry was sent to Russia, officials said.
White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told reporters earlier Monday that the administration had no updates on the delivery of the drones. He added that the United States has seen nothing to reassure us and that supply, and delivery are still looming, are still in sight.
Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein-Amir Abdollahian said last month that Tehran has various types of collaboration with Russia, including in the defense sector.
But we will not help any of the parties involved in this war because we believe it (the war) must be stopped, he said.
Administration officials have confirmed details of Iran’s supply of drones to Russia at a time when the White House is also trying to pressure Tehran to resume compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal.
The administration last week completed its review of Iran’s comments on a European proposal to revive the deal brokered under President Barack Obama’s administration and scrapped in 2018 by then-President Donald Trump in 2018.
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