US warns of deepening alliance between Iran and Russia in Ukraine

Washington threatens sanctions against those supporting ‘flow of arms from Iran to Russia’

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The US on Monday warned of the deepening alliance between Russia and Iran in the war in Ukraine, and said it would sanction anyone helping Tehran ship drones to Moscow.

Russian forces attacked Kyiv on Monday, using what observers say were Iranian-made kamikaze drones designed to wreak havoc on the Ukrainian capital.

Vedant Patel, deputy spokesman at the State Department, said that Russia and Iran working together in Ukraine poses a “profound threat”.

Russia deepening an alliance with Iran is something the whole world … should be [seeing] as a profound threat and something that any country should pay very close attention to,” he said.

Mr Patel said there is “extensive proof” that Russia is using Iranian drones against both military and civilian targets in Ukraine.

He warned companies and individuals against potentially contributing to Iran’s efforts to supply Russia with missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

“Anyone doing business with Iran that could have any link to UAVs or ballistic missile developments, or the flow of arms from Iran to Russia, should be very careful and do their due diligence,” Mr Patel said.

“The US will not hesitate to use sanctions or take actions against perpetrators.”

Nearly eight months since its invasion, Russia has failed to gain air superiority in Ukraine, as Ukrainian forces continue to bring down Russian aircraft thanks to weapons support from allied western countries.

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Updated: October 18, 2022, 8:01 AM