The United States suspects that Iran is preparing to provide Russia with advanced short-range ballistic missiles for use in its invasion of Ukraine, US officials disclosed on 21 November, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Iran already supplied Russia with drones, guided bombs, and artillery shells. Still, concerns about deeper military cooperation arose when Iran showcased Ababil and Fateh-110 missiles during Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu’s September visit to Tehran.
“We are therefore concerned that Iran is considering providing Russia with ballistic missiles for use in Ukraine,” the US National Security Council spokesman stated.
The Russian embassy in Washington and Iran’s UN mission did not immediately reply to comment requests, WSJ added.
Seeking new arms sources amid global sanctions, the Kremlin now also imports North Korean artillery rounds, per US and South Korean authorities. Meanwhile, Iran benefits from military partnerships with Russia, expanding into satellites, air defenses, and electronics, the NSC representative indicated.
Additionally, US intelligence suggests the Russian mercenary Wagner Group has been preparing to provide air defense systems “to either Hezbollah or Iran,” CNN reported, citing National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby.