Iran still refuses to hand over ballistic missiles to Russia for war against Ukraine — Budanov

24 December 2022, 06:01 PM
Iran supplies Russia with weapons for a full-scale war against Ukraine, including kamikaze drones (Photo:REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado)

Iran supplies Russia with weapons for a full-scale war against Ukraine, including kamikaze drones (Photo:REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado)

Russia expects to replenish its arsenal with Iranian ballistic missiles, but Tehran has so far refused to supply them, Kyrylo Budanov, head of the Main Directorate of Intelligence or HUR of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine said in an interview with the New York Times on Dec. 23.

According to Budanov, in exchange for missiles, Russia is offering Iran scientific know-how for the military industry.

Budanov said this was just the beginning of extended cooperation between Russia and Iran.

“Iran is in no hurry to (supply missiles), for understandable reasons, because as soon as Russia fires the first missiles the sanctions pressure will grow” on Iran, Budanov said.

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Under a contract signed in the summer, Moscow purchased 1,700 Shahed drones from Tehran — which are being delivered in tranches. Their production costs about $7,000 per unit, although how much Russia actually paid Iran for these weapons is unclear.

As of Dec. 23, Russia has used about 540 of them, delivering tactical strikes along the front line, on power plants, power pylons, and electrical substations, the head of the HUR said.

The Ukrainian Air Force command said earlier that Ukraine does not have anti-aircraft missiles capable of destroying Iranian ballistic missiles; the authorities called the possible supplies of Iranian missiles to Russia an extra challenge for the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

Iran has been consistently denying that it has anything to do with the supply of kamikaze drones to Russia, which uses them to terrorize civilians and destroy Ukraine’s energy infrastructure.

After the speech of President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in the U.S. Congress, where he declared that Russia had found an accomplice in its policy of genocide — Iran — Tehran began to threaten him.

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