Officials from a U.S.-aligned country have revealed that Moscow and Tehran are moving forward with plans to develop a new factory in Russia that will be used in manufacturing Iranian-designed drones, according to reports in The Wall Street Journal.
According to the reports, a high-level Iranian delegation traveled to Russia on Jan. 5 to inspect the factory’s site and finalize details of the project with Moscow. The report stated that Russia and Iran are planning to develop drones capable of beating the Ukrainian air defenses at the factory.
Iran and Russia are collaborating on a drone facility.
This partnership between two countries within the Axis of Evil is a threat to American security.
— Sen. Marsha Blackburn (@MarshaBlackburn) February 6, 2023
The official told The WSJ that the site for the project is located in the Russian town of Yelabuga, which is just 600 miles east of Moscow. The official added that the factory, when completed, would be capable of building at least 6,000 drones in a few years.
The official who spoke with The WSJ revealed that both countries are working together to develop new engines for the Shahed-136 drone to make it fly faster and farther.
Russia and Iran have agreed and are speeding up to build a drone factory in Russia.
In January, Iran sent a delegation including chief of IRGC aerospace Brig. Gen Mehrabi and Ghassem Damavandian, CEO of Qods Aviation Industries. They toured the building site of the factory. pic.twitter.com/zhBVp8kOhp
— LogKa (@LogKa11) February 5, 2023
Since the war began, Russia has largely deployed the drone model to target Ukrainian infrastructures. However, the Ukrainian air defense has repealed most of the drones due to their slow-moving and loud engines, making them easy to shoot down. So far, Ukraine has shut down over 540 drones.
The Iranian delegation includes the chief executive of Iran’s Quds Aviation Industry, Ghassem Damavandian, who, according to The WSJ, is an important player in developing and building drones for Iran.Brig. Gen. Abdollah Mehrabi, Leader of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Aerospace Force Research and Self-Sufficiency Jihad Organization, led the delegation.
News of the latest partnership between both countries comes after Ukraine’s armed forces reported that Moscow was regrouping its forces for a new offensive against Ukraine along five lines of attack.
The report revealed that Russia is building up its troops in Russian-held areas of Ukraine, with 300,000 soldiers mobilized in September included in the build-up. Russia is reportedly building up its forces at barracks and villages, with direct access to supply routes leading to front-line positions.