The Iranian government is preparing to send “several hundred” drones, including some equipped with weapons, to Russia at some point in July, national security adviser Jake Sullivan told reporters Monday.
Sullivan made the announcement during an afternoon briefing at the White House, where he said he was confident that with support from the West, Ukraine’s capital Kyiv will remain under Ukrainian control.
Then he pivoted to the toll the war has taken on Russia, particularly its weapons.
“Our information indicates that the Iranian government is preparing to provide Russia with up to several hundred [unmanned aerial vehicles], including weapons-capable UAVs on an expedited timeline,” Sullivan said. “It’s unclear whether Iran has delivered any of these UAVs to Russia already.”
Iran will train Russian forces to use the drones as early as this month, he added.
“This is just one example of how Russia is looking to countries like Iran for capabilities that … have been used before we got the ceasefire in place in Yemen to attack Saudi Arabia,” Sullivan said.
“We will continue to do our part to help sustain the effective defense of Ukraine and to help the Ukrainians show that the Russian effort to try to wipe Ukraine off the map cannot succeed.”
Sullivan made the comments ahead of President Joe Biden’s trip to Israel and Saudi Arabia this week, where Iran will be one of the major issues on the agenda.