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ISW comments on Iran's possible transfer of missiles and barrage bombs to Russia

ISW comments on Iran's possible transfer of missiles and barrage bombs to Russia Iran transfers barrage bombs to Russia and may start supplying missiles (Photo: GettyImages)

Iran is supplying Russia with barrage bombs of various types and can also transfer short-range ballistic missiles, according to the Institute for the Study of War (ISW).

On November 21, U.S. National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said that Iran was supplying Russia with cruise missiles and may be preparing to transfer short-range ballistic missiles.

ISW has observed Russian forces increasingly using barrage bombs, including modified FAB-500, KAB-500, and RPK-500 bombs in the Lyman and Kherson directions.

It is unclear whether Kirby referred to Iran supplying barrage bomb components or fully constructed munitions to Russia. According to the ISW Iran Critical Threats Project's report on August 14, Iran domestically produces different varieties of barrage bombs, including Ghaem, long-range Yasin, Sadid, and Balaban. Iran generally deploys these bombs with several drone platforms, including the Shahed-131/136, which they export to Russia.

A Russian military blogger has previously shared claims that Russian Su-25 aircraft may be compatible with Iranian barrage bombs. Iran presented several variants of such bombs at the Russian Army 2023 forum in Moscow in August 2023 and possibly during Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu's visit to Tehran in September 2023.

Kirby added that Iran also continues to supply Russia with drones and artillery ammunition. On November 6, Deputy Chief of the Defense Intelligence of Ukraine, Vadym Skibitskyi, said that Iran may continue to send small batches of Shahed-131/136 drones to Russia, despite intensified efforts to produce such UAVs domestically.

Previously, ISW estimated that Iran and Russia could conclude a deal to sell drones and missiles after the expiration of UN missile restrictions against the export of Iranian missiles and missile-related technologies on October 18, 2023.

The question of Iran's possible transfer of missiles to Russia

Since the beginning of the full-scale invasion, Russia has enlisted Iran's help in supplying Shahed-type kamikaze drones, and recently there have been reports of possible missile supplies from Tehran to Moscow.

Previously, analysts at the American Institute for the Study of War (ISW) admitted that Russia and Iran may have agreed to transfer missiles.

In addition, Israeli Mossad Director of Intelligence David Barnea recently stated that Iran intends to transfer short- and long-range missiles to Russia in addition to Shahed kamikaze drones.

The other day, John Kirby, said that the United States is concerned that Iran is preparing to transfer ballistic missiles to Russia.