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Reuters: Iran supplies 'hundreds of ballistic missiles' to Russia

by Elsa Court and The Kyiv Independent news desk February 21, 2024 6:14 PM 2 min read
Russia's President Vladimir Putin and Iran's President Ebrahim Raisi walk together following their meeting in the Kremlin in Moscow Dec. 7, 2023. (Sergei Bobylyov / POOL / AFP) 
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Iran has sent "a large number of powerful surface-to-surface ballistic missiles" to Russia, Reuters reported on Feb. 21, citing multiple sources.

Three Iranian sources told Reuters that Iran sent 400 missiles, including "many from the Fateh-110 family of short-range ballistic weapons," which have a range of up to 700 kilometers.

Russia overtook Iran as the most sanctioned country in the world following the launch of its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. Russia cooperates with Iran extensively on both military and political levels, as well as with other pariah states like Syria and North Korea.  

The Wall Street Journal reported in early January that Russia was planning to buy short-range ballistic missiles from Iran. The U.S.-based think tank Institute for the Study of War (ISW) then reported on Jan. 15 that Russia and Iran are preparing to sign a treaty to further develop military-technological cooperation.

The missile shipments began in early January 2024 "after a deal was finalized in meetings late last year between Iranian and Russian military and security officials that took place in Tehran and Moscow," Reuters said, citing one source.

Another source, an anonymous Iranian military official, told Reuters that there had been "at least four shipments of missiles," with more planned in the coming weeks. The missiles are reportedly sent to Russia by plane and by ship across the Caspian Sea.

Kyiv has not yet registered any use of Iranian ballistic missiles by Russia, a source in the Ukrainian military told Reuters. Iran has provided Russia with thousands of Shahed kamikaze drones used in airstrikes against Ukraine and is helping Moscow build a drone factory in Russia.

Western and Ukrainian officials have confirmed the use of North Korean artillery shells and missiles used by Russian forces.

Russia has launched at least 24 North Korean missiles against Ukraine, Prosecutor General Andrii Kostin said on Feb. 16.

Since last autumn, North Korea has reportedly provided Russia with extensive weapons supplies, including artillery shells and ballistic missiles.

Russia used 2 Zircon hypersonic missiles in Feb. 7 attack, expert says
Russia launched two 3M22 Zircon hypersonic cruise missiles during the large-scale attack against Ukraine on Feb. 7, Oleksandr Ruvin, director of the Kyiv Scientific Research Institute of Forensic Expertise, said in an interview with Vechirniy Kyiv on Feb. 21.
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8:28 PM

FT: Russia may be gearing up for large-scale offensive against Ukraine.

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