The National / October 25, 2022
Mr Herzog says he has proof that Iranian weapons are contributing to crimes against humanity.
Israeli President Isaac Herzog has revealed that he is bringing evidence to the Biden administration of Iranian weapons use by Russia against civilians in Ukraine.
Mr Herzog arrived in Washington for a two-day visit on Tuesday and will meet President Joe Biden as well as top administration and Congressional officials.
Ahead of his meeting with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, the Israeli president said he will reveal information on Iranian weapons use by Russian forces.
“I would be exposing more of the fact that Iranian weapons are used against innocent civilians in Ukraine,” Mr Herzog said.
The use of drones against civilian targets constitutes a crime against humanity.
Mr Herzog’s office said on Tuesday that he will be sharing photo evidence showing Russia using advanced Iranian drones in its attacks on Ukraine, according to The Times of Israel.
US and EU officials have accused Russia of using Iranian drones to attack civilians and energy infrastructure in Ukraine.
The Israeli leader called Iran a challenge “to humanity at large”, voicing support for the protests that have now approached their sixth week.
Mr Blinken told Mr Herzog that the US will counter the Iranian supplies.
”The provision of drones by Iran to Russia to enable its further aggression against Ukraine and the Ukrainian people is showing horrific results on the ground in Ukraine and it’s something that we are determined to stand against,” Mr Blinken said.
On Monday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Moscow has ordered 2,000 more kamikaze drones from Tehran.
“The disgusting sound of Iranian drones is heard in our skies every night. According to our intelligence, Russia has ordered about 2,000 Shahed drones from Iran … and Iranian instructors came to teach Russians how to use them,” Mr Zelenskyy said.
Neither Russia nor Iran have publicly acknowledged their military co-operation.
Last week, White House National Security spokesman John Kirby said Iranian troops have been training Russian forces in Crimea in the use of Tehran-made drones to strike Ukrainian cities including Kyiv.
The EU imposed last week new sanctions against Iran over its supply of drones to Russia, freezing the assets of three individuals and one entity they said are responsible for drone deliveries.
Reports of a transfer of Iranian drones to Russia surfaced in August, and Ukraine has published pictures in the past weeks of the wreckage of Shahed-136 unmanned aerial vehicles, known as kamikaze drones because they explode on impact.
Joyce Karam – senior US correspondent