Russia has experienced “many malfunctions” with drones purchased from Iran for combat functions in Ukraine, Reuters reported on Monday, citing a U.S. administration source.
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, reportedly shared U.S. assessments according to which Russia acquired Iranian-made Mohajer-6 and Shahed-series unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) earlier in August.
According to the official, Russia likely plans to purchase hundreds more such UAVs.
“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 official was quoted as saying.
In July, U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan informed reporters that the United States had intelligence indicating that Iran is ready to supply Russia with hundreds of drones.
“Our information indicates that the Iranian government is preparing to provide Russia with up to several hundred UAVs, including weapons-capable UAVs, on an expedited timeline,” Sullivan said at the time.
The Biden administration published satellite photographs this month showing Russian officials visiting Kashan Airfield on June 8 and July 5 to inspect Iranian drones.