J Street Calls for Urgent Action against Iran’s Supply of Drones to Russia

October 18, 2022

J Street is outraged by Russia’s use of Iranian-supplied Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) against both military targets and civilian infrastructure in its war of aggression against Ukraine. We unequivocally condemn Iran’s supply of these drones and Russia’s use of them to commit war crimes in Ukraine.

Iran’s supply of UAVs to Russia violates the terms of United Nations Security Council Resolution 2231. J Street therefore calls on the United States government and its allies and partners, including those in the United Nations, to take urgent diplomatic action — including sanctions as appropriate — to address this and other instances of Iran’s dangerous supplying of weapons to Russia. J Street also endorses and urges Congress to pass the bipartisan Stop Iran Drones Act, which would amend existing US law to make sanctionable any action that seeks to advance Iran’s UAV program, as defined by the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms.

This cooperation between Iran and Russia in the killing of Ukrainians comes as Iran’s authoritarian regime continues its bloody crackdown on protestors — bravely led by women and girls — opposing the regime’s repressive actions. J Street reiterates our support, sympathy and solidarity with the Iranian people struggling for their fundamental rights, and our condemnation of the Iranian government’s brutal repression of its own people.

There can be no doubt that the Iranian regime’s actions would be far worse – and heavily immune to deterrence – if Iran were to acquire nuclear weapons. Indeed, the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine shows all too well how difficult it can be to counter the aggressive acts of a nuclear power. Yet Iran is now closer than ever to having the capacity to manufacture a nuclear weapon — and its hardliners more empowered and operating with a freer hand — as a result of Donald Trump’s abandonment of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action that had restrained Iran’s nuclear program.

It remains in the essential security interests of the United States and its allies, including Israel, for Iran’s nuclear activities to again be tightly restrained and subject to intrusive inspections and monitoring. We commend the Biden Administration for its efforts to date to restore those restrictions through tough diplomacy, as well as its current focus on countering the Iranian regime’s other outrageous actions on the world stage and against its own people.

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