US sanctions groups supplying Iranian drones to Russia

Associated Press/LIBKOS
Ukrainian soldiers pass by houses ruined in the Russian shelling in Bakhmut, Donetsk region, Ukraine, Thursday, Nov. 10, 2022. (AP Photo/LIBKOS)

The Treasury Department on Tuesday announced sanctions against groups involved with the production or supply of Iranian drones to Russia for use in Ukraine.

The department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctioned Shahed Aviation Industries Research Center, Success Aviation Services FZC and i Jet Global DMCC as well as three individuals for their roles in supplying Russia.

Production company Shahed Aviation Industries Research Center is located in Iran, while aviation consulting companies Success Aviation Services FZC and i Jet Global DMCC are based in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

“Today’s action exposes and holds accountable companies and individuals that have enabled Russia’s use of Iranian-built UAVs [unmanned aerial vehicles] to brutalize Ukrainian civilians,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said on Tuesday.

“This is part of our larger effort to disrupt Russia’s war effort and deny the equipment it needs through sanctions and export controls,” she said.

Yellen first announced on Sunday that the Treasury Department would sanction the network providing Russia with weapons.

Shahed Aviation Industries Research Center designs and produces the Shahed-series UAVs provided to the Russian army for its attacks on Ukraine, while the remaining two companies facilitate the transfer of the weapons to Russia, according to Treasury.

Success Aviation Services and i Jet Global work alongside Iranian firm Safiran Airport Services, which has already been sanctioned by the U.S., to transport drones.

The U.S. government is cooperating with the government of the UAE in its sanctions of the two companies based in the Emirates, according to OFAC.

The Treasury Department sanctioned individuals Abbas Djuma and Tigran Khristoforovich Srabionov for their involvement coordinating between private Russian military company PMC Wagner and Iranian UAV production.

This story was updated at 5:44 p.m.

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