Iran ready for talks with Ukraine over 'baseless' drone claims

AFP , Tuesday 18 Oct 2022

Tehran on Tuesday said it was ready for talks with Kyiv to clarify "baseless" claims that Iran is providing Russia with weapons and drones to be used in the war against Ukraine.

File Photo: The Iranian Armed Forces chief of staff and army commander visiting the underground drone base. AP


Kyiv and its Western allies have accused Moscow of using Iranian-made drones in attacks on Ukraine in recent weeks. The Kremlin said Tuesday it had no knowledge of its army using such weapons.

Calling the claims "baseless" and "based on false information", Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Nasser Kanani expressed "Iran's readiness for negotiation and discussion with Ukraine to resolve these accusations," a statement said.

"Claims made regarding the Islamic republic sending weapons including military drones to be used in the Ukraine war" are "untrue", the ministry statement added.

Earlier Tuesday, Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said he had suggested to President Volodymyr Zelenksy that Kyiv cut diplomatic ties with Iran.

He cited "the amount of destruction Iranian drones have caused" in Ukraine and "the possible continuation of Iran's supply of weapons to Russia".

A day earlier, Kuleba urged the European Union "to impose sanctions on Iran for providing Russia with drones".

Iran's foreign ministry said that allegations of providing weapons to Russia were "part of the political and purposeful creation of atmosphere by the media organisations of some countries" against Tehran.

The Washington Post, citing US and allied security officials, reported Sunday that Iran planned to provide Russia with additional drones and also "surface-to-surface missiles".

Iran's Kanani said that "since the beginning of the conflict, the Islamic republic... has always stressed the need to stop the conflict and resolve disputes through peaceful means."

The United States warned Monday it would take action against companies and nations working with Iran's drone program.

Last month, Kyiv decided to significantly reduce its diplomatic relations with Tehran over alleged arms deliveries to Russia.

Short link: