Russia has a number of its own programs to create unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on February 6, commenting on information that appeared in the media about plans for joint production of UAVs with Iran.
The day before, The Wall Street Journal, citing sources, wrote that Russia and Iran were allegedly going to build a plant that could produce at least 6,000 Iranian-designed UAVs.
Commenting on this information, Peskov said that he did not know what sources the newspaper relied on. At the same time, he noted that Russia has a number of its own programs for the production of UAVs, which are being implemented.
“You know that a list of presidential instructions was recently adopted, signed and made public on the development of the unmanned aerial vehicles. Therefore, we have our own development programs,” Peskov said.
The fact that Russian President Vladimir Putin approved instructions for the development of unmanned aerial systems became known on December 30. In particular, by June 1, 2023, a strategy for the development of unmanned aircraft for the period up to 2030 and for the future up to 2035 should be approved.
Moscow and Tehran have repeatedly denied Western claims that Russia is supplying Iranian drones for use in Ukraine. As early as August 30 last year, Dmitry Peskov, the press secretary of the President of Russia, called such reports a stuffing and stressed that the Russian army uses domestically produced drones.
A senior EU official said on January 20 that there was no evidence of ballistic missile shipments from Iran to Russia.
Earlier, on January 6, Washington imposed sanctions on several Iranian citizens who are allegedly associated with the supply of UAVs for the needs of the Russian army. In addition, the US authorities imposed sanctions on the director of Iran’s Aerospace Industries Organization, “responsible for overseeing Iran’s ballistic missile program.”
Prior to this, on December 29 last year, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov called unsubstantiated statements by the West that Russia allegedly has Iranian unmanned aerial vehicles that a friendly country supplied to it.
On December 19, UN Deputy Secretary General for Political Affairs Rosemary DiCarlo announced that a number of countries had allegedly transferred Tehran sub-sanctioned UAVs in circumvention of Security Council Resolution 2231 of the international organization (on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action on the Iranian nuclear program).
In turn, the permanent representative of the Russian Federation to the international organization, Vasily Nebenzya, said that the UN should not be led by provocateurs requesting an investigation into Russia’s alleged use of Iranian drones in Ukraine. Nebenzya called these suspicions far-fetched and unfounded.
The Washington Post also reported on October 16 that Iran would allegedly supply Russia with a shipment of weapons, which would include surface-to-ground ballistic missiles and a shipment of drones. According to the American media, the party should include dozens of Mohajer-6 and Shahed-136 devices, which are called kamikaze drones. Such UAVs are capable of hitting targets at a distance of over 2,000 km.