Russia to Produce Iranian Drones on Its Soil Next Year: White House Warning

Source AFP

Russia will be able to produce Iranian drones on its soil next year © Satellite image ©2023 Maxar Technologies/AFP/Handout

Premium Subscriber-only audio playback

La Russia “receives material fromIran to build a drone factory” on its soil and that site “could be fully operational early next year,” a White House spokesman warned Friday.

“The military partnership between Russia and Iran appears to be deepening,” National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said, relying on US intelligence information.

The White House is issuing an information notice to foreign governments and companies on Friday, to allow them, according to him, to “better understand the risks” of the Iranian drone program and thus avoid them from “inadvertently” contributing to it. .

The US government has released a satellite image of the planned location according to its intelligence services for this drone factory, in the special economic zone of Alabouga, some 900 kilometers east of Moscow.

He also published a map of the route taken, according to the Americans, by the Iranian drones now used by the Russian army in Ukraine: departing from the Iranian port of Amirabad on the Caspian Sea and bound for that of Makhachkala in Russia, before transiting to the Russian air bases of Primorsko-Akhtarsk (by the Sea of ​​Azov) and Seshcha ( near the border with Belarus).

THE UNITED STATES estimate that until last May, Russia received “hundreds” of Iranian attack drones, and accuse it of having used them recently to “attack Kiev and terrorize the Ukrainian population”, said John Kirby.

He repeated, as Washington had said before, that the Biden administration was “ready to do more” to “expose and disrupt” this drone cooperation.

“We will continue to impose sanctions against actors involved in the transfer of Iranian military equipment to Russia for use in Ukraine,” the spokesperson said.

The United States has been raising its voice for some time now on the military partnership between Moscow and Tehran, which “goes both ways”, recalled the spokesperson.

John Kirby assured that Iran was seeking Russian military equipment “for several billion dollars.”

He recalled in particular that Iran had concluded an agreement to buy Russian combat planes, and assured that Tehran also wanted to acquire attack helicopters or even radars.

Tehran has repeatedly deemed American accusations of arms supplies to Russia “unfounded”, claiming that it is not a party to the Ukrainian conflict.

The war has revived discussions between Moscow and Tehran, both anxious to break their growing isolation.

The two countries, for example, recently announced the construction of a rail link aimed at circumventing traditional sea routes and international sanctions.

09/06/2023 18:31:42 – 
        Washington (AFP) – 
        © 2023 AFP