Growing ties between Russia and Iran pose new dangers, according to a recent analysis by the BBC. The report argues that they are now more closely knit together as a result of the conflict, which may have repercussions beyond Ukraine.

The University of Exeter’s Strategy and Security Institute’s Jonathan Marcus has examined the danger and stated that for years headlines have focused on the issues involving the shipment of sophisticated Russian air defense systems to Iran. However, the direction of the arms traffic has significantly changed.

Currently, Moscow is terrorizing Ukrainian civilians and attacking the nation’s electricity generation and distribution infrastructure with drones supplied by Iran.

Due to its situation in Ukraine, Russia has turned to Tehran for its supply of precision-guided weapons. It is rapidly running out of its own weapons.

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In several instances, the Russians have used air defense and coastal defense missiles to attack land targets in Ukraine, which is not their best use.

Transport flights from Iran to Russia have been watched. According to reports from U.S. sources, Iranian instructors from the IRGC—the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps—have travelled to a base in Crimea to instruct Russian personnel on how to use the equipment.

Both Iranian Shahed-131 loitering munitions (commonly referred to as kamikaze drones) and the larger Shahed-136 drones’ wreckage have been examined. Despite its denials, Tehran is without a doubt making up for a sizable gap in Russia’s arsenal, as reported by the BBC.

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This poses a threat to Ukraine, according to the report. While a sizable portion of the drones supplied by Iran have been shot down, there may be worse to come.

There are concerns that even more dangerous Iranian weapons, ballistic missiles, may soon be travelling to Russia. Iran has more potent loitering munitions in its arsenal.

These have much larger warheads than drones, and Ukraine’s ability to intercept them is limited which might complicate Western efforts to strengthen Ukraine’s anti-air and anti-missile defenses.

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The BBC report emphasises the wider implications of this expanding alliance between Moscow and Tehran.

The future of the stale nuclear deal between the international community and Tehran may be affected. Furthermore, experts warn that any change to the delicate balance of power in Syria could have a significant impact on Israel and, in turn, its relations with Moscow.

Russia and Iran both need allies because they are vulnerable and alone.

Economic sanctions are being imposed on Russia as a result of its aggression against Ukraine, a war that is not going well for Moscow. The Iranian regime is also subject to sanctions because of its human rights record and nuclear program while it’s dealing with considerable unrest at home, the BBC report highlights.

The analysis states that they both, along with China, are said to be members of a small “club” of authoritarian countries that seek not only to further their own regional strategic objectives but also, more broadly, to retaliate against what they perceive to be a U.S.-dominated global order.

Iran’s domestic security crackdown has already prompted the West to impose new economic sanctions. Currently, the United Kingdom and France view Iran’s arms transfers to Russia as a violation of UN Security Council Resolution 2231, which was adopted in the wake of the 2015 nuclear agreement.

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The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action – the international agreement to limit Iran’s nuclear activities that the Trump Administration abandoned in May 2018 – will be further undermined by these new tensions.

The deal has been put on hold, at least until after the US midterm elections on Nov. 8. Iran has nonetheless continued to advance its uranium enrichment efforts.

The report claims that while the West’s attention is firmly focused on Ukraine, the Iran nuclear dossier is a looming shadow for the region. Russia, one of the important parties to the original agreement, is unlikely to put pressure on its new arms supplier to make concessions.

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