A drone flies over Kyiv during an attack on Oct. 17, 2022, amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
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UNITED NATIONS – Iran’s U.N. representative sharply denied Western allegations that Tehran supplied Moscow with a fleet of drones for use in Ukraine.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran has taken a clear and consistent position on the situation in Ukraine which has been pronounced since the start of the conflict,” Ambassador Amir Saeid Iravani, permanent representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations, told reporters.
“Iran has consistently advocated for peace and the immediate end to the conflict in Ukraine,” Iravani said.
He added that the claims are “unfounded and unsubstantiated” and said that the West was mounting a disinformation campaign against his country. Iravani, who took no questions from reporters, also said the baseless allegations were “disappointing.”
The United Nations Security Council at U.N. Headquarters in New York City September 30, 2022.
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Iravani’s comments followed a closed-door U.N. Security Council meeting where the United States, Britain and France raised the implications of Iranian arms transfers to Russia.
The three nations — also members of the original 2015 Iran nuclear deal — say that by providing Russia with drones Iran has violated a U.N. Security Council resolution. The resolution, known as 2231, prohibits the transfer “of all items, materials, equipments and goods and technology” from Iran to another nation unless it is approved in advance by the U.N. Security Council on a case-by-case basis.
Iravani said that such transfers are “outside the scope” of the 2015 resolution and therefore Tehran has not violated its commitments.
Kyiv has meanwhile invited U.N. experts to inspect what it says are downed Iranian drones in Ukraine, according to a Reuters report.
In recent days, Moscow has carried out several devastating missile and drone strikes against what Ukraine said were civilian targets as well as critical infrastructure such as energy facilities. The Kremlin has repeatedly denied that it uses Iranian-made drones in Ukraine and that it targets residential and other high civilian areas.
Dmitry Polyanskiy, first deputy permanent representative of Russia to the United Nations, told reporters that the drones found in Ukraine are not Iranian but Russian-made.
Dmitry Polyanskiy, First Deputy Permanent Representative of Russia to the United Nations, speaks to reporters at the United Nations headquarters in New York on October 19, 2022.
Amanda Macias | CNBC
He said that images of the drones downed in Ukraine clearly have Russian inscriptions on them. He added, though, that he is not a drone expert and could not elaborate further.
Following the drone strikes, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg announced that the 30-member alliance would send drone-jamming equipment to Ukraine.
Meanwhile, Kyiv has also suggested breaking off diplomatic ties with Tehran in light of the recent arms transfers and drone attacks.