Iran has supplied Russia with numerous military equipment and weapon systems since the start of the conflict in Ukraine. However, doubts currently hover on the side of Tehran as to the prospect of seeing Russia honor the delivery of 50 Su-35 fighters prepaid by Iran.
The Russian-Iranian military partnership
Military cooperation between Russia and Iran is one of the parallel chapters related to the war in Ukraine. For a year now, Iran has been making regular arms deliveries to Russia, including Shahed-136 suicide drones sent in swarms against Ukrainian cities, Iranian 9M133 Dehlavieh anti-tank guided missiles and other ammunition.
The ins and outs of this partnership are the source of much speculation. As far as we can see, the relationship between Russia and Iran is more about self-interested mutual aid than a real alliance between the two countries, both authoritarian and marginalized by Western states. The challenge for Russia? compensate for the inability of its industry to provide the necessary equipment in sufficient quantity to its troops engaged in the fight against the Ukrainian forces. Iran, for its part, is seeking to strengthen its position as a regional power in the Middle East through a partnership with a major power, while pursuing the objective of modernizing its military equipment.
The success of Iran’s missile program…
Iran has made its missile development program its workhorse. After the appearance of Khorramshahr-4 ballistic missile or Kheibar (2000 km range, 1500 kg warhead) last May, Tehran unveiled its brand new weapon at the beginning of June 2023, the “Fattah” hypersonic ballistic missile which therefore brought it into the very closed club of powers operationally mastering the hypersonic weapon.