In response to rumors that Tehran planned to give Moscow missiles for use on the battlefield, a U.S. official stated on Monday that the U.S. intended to further punish Iran for assisting Russia in the conflict in Ukraine.
The restrictions, including economic sanctions and export bans, would also target third parties that aid Tehran and Moscow.
Are we going to do more regarding Iranian arms exports to Russia? Absolutely, the U.S. official said, speaking anonymously due to the topic’s sensitivity. We will sanction anyone who aids Iranians in assisting Russia in killing Ukrainians. Do your due diligence because anyone in the world selling Iran material that could be used for unmanned aerial vehicles, ballistic missiles, or involved in flights between Iran and Russia, we will sanction you.
The source declined to discuss the specifics of impending sanctions or to comment directly on recent rumors concerning Iran-Russia arms negotiations.
In addition to continuing to provide Russia drones, some of which are deployed kamikaze-style to crash into targets, the Washington Post reported that Iran intends to deliver Moscow surface-to-surface missiles over the weekend. According to the Post, they might include Fateh-110 and Zolfaghar missiles, two Iranian short-range ballistic missiles.
Iran has denied supplying weapons for use in Ukraine to Russia.
The U.S. official emphasized that the Biden administration had made such arms purchases public knowledge in the past and made it clear that they would result in sanctions.
Since the summer, we have issued highly public warnings regarding upcoming sales, including UAV sales. Iran has lied about them, and they are being exposed for deception.
As reported by the Associated Press, more than two dozen suicide drones attacked Kyiv on Monday, killing four people, setting buildings ablaze, and targeting energy installations. It was reported that 28 Iranian-made Shahed drones appeared to carry out the attack.
Politicians in the United States joined demands to penalize Iran for these arms transactions. Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Illinois) tweeted that Biden must loudly condemn the Iranian dictatorship, back the demonstrators, and offer air protection for Ukraine.
The quick retaliation against Iran was not restricted to American authorities. In reaction to Iran’s sale of drones, Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu has urged strong deterrent measures. Our Ukrainian friends have stated that Iranian-made drones carried out today’s attacks, Reinsalu told the European Union on the sidelines of a meeting in Luxembourg. In this context, he believes that immediate sanctions should be imposed on Iran for these activities, he added.
The sanctions, he continued, should be “severe” to dissuade Iran from engaging in additional operations in this context. He did not comment on allegations of planned missile sales.
The E.U. strives to find a balance between punishing Iran for aiding and abetting Russia and attempting to sustain discussions on the EU-led JCPOA nuclear deal with Iran, which has stalled. The U.S. withdrew from Iran nuclear deal in 2018.
The European Union frequently disputes a connection between drones and the Iran deal, as Dutch Foreign Minister Wopke Hoekstra made clear Monday morning when he referred to the accord as a “different table.”
And Josep Borrell Fontelles, the Union’s high foreign affairs and security policy representative stated in an interview that direct evidence of Iran’s arms shipments is required. Nonetheless, he stated that the E.U. is closely monitoring this usage of drones. They are accumulating evidence. And they will be prepared to respond with the available resources.
On social media, Ukrainian authorities objected to Iran’s role in supplying Russia with arms. Minister of foreign affairs Dmytro Kuleba sought increased air defense and ammunition and urged the E.U. to impose “severe” sanctions on Iran from a bomb bunker.
Minister of Defense of Ukraine Oleksii Reznikov called for widespread criticism of Iran, calling for democracies and the world to unite to fight these attacks and destroy evil.