Confirmed: Russia is now using Iranian attack drones in Ukraine

Russia has inflicted serious damage on Ukrainian forces with disguised Iranian drones, according to the Wall Street Journal.

By World Israel News Staff

Russia is now using Iranian-made Shahed-136 drones, inflicting “serious damage” on Ukraine, The Wall Street Journal reported on Saturday.

The U.S. in July warned that Russia was procuring hundreds of military drones from Iran, including kamikaze UAVs, which only attack after identifying a target. Iran’s advanced drone industry, which is in part due to reverse-engineering errant American drones in Iraq and Afghanistan, has exports to Yemen, Iraq, Syria, Venezuela, Ethiopia and the Hezbollah terror group in Lebanon, which has used them against Israel.

“Russia has inflicted serious damage on Ukrainian forces with recently introduced Iranian drones in its first wide-scale deployment of a foreign weapons system since the war began, Ukrainian commanders say,” the WSJ report said.

Last week, Ukrainian forces posted images appearing to show the remains of an Iranian Shahed-136 – a munition about which little is known – with Cyrillic writing and Russian colors.

The drone was rebranded as Geranium 2, the report said citing a Ukrainian commander, and started appearing over the past week over Ukrainian armor and artillery positions in the northeastern Kharkiv region.

The drones have destroyed two 152-mm self-propelled howitzers, two 122-mm self-propelled howitzers, as well as two BTR armored infantry vehicles, WSJ cited Col. Rodion Kulagin, commander of artillery of Ukraine’s 92nd Mechanized Brigade, as saying.

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“Before the current wide-scale use of the Shaheds, Russia carried out a test last month, striking a US-supplied M777 155-mm towed howitzer with the drone, Col. Kulagin said. Another Iranian drone malfunctioned and was recovered, he said,” the report said.

The Shahed-136 provided a “potent counterweight” to Ukraine’s U.S.-supplied weapons systems, including Himars missile launchers, the report said citing Scott Crino, founder and chief executive of Red Six Solutions LLC, a strategic consulting firm.

“The presence of Shahed-136 in Ukraine war is undoubtedly changing the operational plans of Kyiv,” the report cited Crino as saying. “The sheer size of Ukraine battlefield makes it hard to defend against the Shahed-136.”

Russia’s use of Shahed-136 drones in Ukraine constitutes “the most challenging expansion” of Iran’s weapons export beyond the Middle East, the report said.