US imposes new Iran-related sanctions: Treasury
The US Treasury Department announces imposing sanctions against one person and four entities it accused of producing and transporting Iranian drones.
The US Treasury Department announced Thursday that the United States has imposed sanctions on one person and four entities in a new round of Iran-related sanctions.
In a statement, the Treasury Department confirmed that it designated Tehran-based Safiran Airport Services, accusing it of coordinating alleged Russian military flights between Iran and Russia, including flights associated with transporting drones, personnel, and related equipment.
In addition, the US Department designated Paravar Pars Company, Design and Manufacturing of Aircraft Engines, and Baharestan Kish Company, claiming that they are involved in the development, production, and procurement of Iranian drones.
The Treasury Department also designated Rehmatollah Heidari, Baharestan Kish Company’s managing director and a member of its board of directors.
Last month, a US official told Reuters that "we assess that Russia intends to use these Iranian UAVs, which can conduct air-to-surface attacks, electronic warfare, and targeting, on the battlefield in Ukraine."
The US official claimed that Russia most likely planned to acquire hundreds of Mohajer-6 and Shahed unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).
In the same context, undersecretary of the Treasury for terrorism and financial intelligence, Brian Nelson, said Thursday in a statement that "the United States is committed to strictly enforcing our sanctions against both Russia and Iran and holding accountable Iran and those supporting Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine."
Russian delegation visited Iran to inspect UAVs: CNN, Sullivan
It is noteworthy that in mid-June, US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan and CNN claimed that a Russian delegation visited an airfield in Iran at least twice in May to inspect weapons-capable drones, based on satellite imagery they obtained.
US officials told CNN that in June, Iran began showcasing the Shahed-191 and Shahed-129 UAVs to Russia at Kashan Airfield south of Tehran.
CNN quoted Sullivan as claiming that "we have information that the Iranian government is preparing to provide Russia with several hundred UAVs, including weapons-capable UAVs."
"We assess an official Russian delegation recently received a showcase of Iranian attack-capable UAVs," he added.
The National Security Advisor said, "We are releasing these images captured in June showing Iranian UAVs that the Russian government delegation saw that day. This suggests ongoing Russian interest in acquiring Iranian attack-capable UAVs."
Sullivan claimed that this "was the first time a Russian delegation has visited this airfield for such a showcase," and the US officials said that on July 5, a Russian delegation visited the airfield in Iran for a similar showcase.
Iranian FM spokesperson responds to US allegations
In response, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Nasser Kanaani told reporters that "the history of cooperation between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Russian Federation in the field of some new technologies dates back to before the start of the war in Ukraine and there has been no special development in this relationship recently."
Furthermore, the spokesperson stressed that "the position of the Islamic Republic of Iran regarding the war in Ukraine is quite clear and has been officially announced many times," adding that "the claim of the US official comes while the United States and the Europeans have for years turned the occupying and aggressor countries, including in the West Asian region, into a storehouse for their various fatal weapons."