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White House: US to impose new sanctions on Iran, 'go further' if ballistic missiles sent to Russia

by Dinara Khalilova and The Kyiv Independent news desk February 23, 2024 9:53 AM 2 min read
U.S. National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby speaks during a news conference in Washington, D.C., on March 21, 2023. (Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
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The U.S. will impose new sanctions against Iran over its military cooperation with Russia in the coming days and is "prepared to go further" if Iran sells Moscow ballistic missiles, U.S. National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby said on Feb. 22.

Reuters reported on Feb. 21, citing multiple sources, that Iran had already sent 400 ballistic missiles to Russia. Kirby said the U.S. has not yet seen any confirmation of the delivery but warned that if Iran proceeds with the provision, there would be a "swift and severe" response.

"For our part, we will take this matter to the U.N. Security Council. We will implement additional sanctions against Iran. And we will coordinate further response options with our allies and partners in Europe and elsewhere."

Russia has veto power at the U.N. Security Council and has used it multiple times.

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," an unnamed source told Reuters.

The White House warned last month that Iran-Russia negotiations to acquire short-range ballistic missiles had been actively advancing, and though Washington can not confirm that the delivery has already taken place, the U.S. has "no reason to believe that they will not follow through," Kirby told reporters.

"We have demonstrated our ability to take action in response to the military partnership between Russia and Iran in the past. We will do so in the future," he added.

Tehran and Moscow have deepened their military and political cooperation since the start of the full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

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.

Opinion: Will Europe ever get serious about defense?
“Words, words, just words,” sighed one VIP attendee at the Munich Security Conference as representatives of three European Union member states discussed security cooperation. “China will get the message: ‘No need to worry about us here,’” said another about the signals being sent from Bavar…


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