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Secretary of Russian Security Council visits Iran to discuss arms deal: ISW

Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev has been in Tehran since Tuesday, presumably to discuss Russia’s potential purchase of Iranian ballistic missiles. The Iranian Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) “likely announced Patrushev’s arrival in Iran to highlight the deepening cooperation between Moscow and Tehran to an international audience,” the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) assessed in a recent report.

According to the US think tank analysts, the Iranian authorities also wanted to indirectly emphasise that a prominent Russian government official had asked Iran for help in the conflict with Ukraine.

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“Tehran is likely eager to publicly signal this rebalancing of its strategic partnership with Moscow, especially to regional Iranian adversaries with which the Kremlin occasionally cooperates such as Israel and Saudi Arabia,” ISW reported.

The think tank also pointed out that Patrushev’s visit to Iran comes against the backdrop of reports that the Iranian regime needs Russia’s help in suppressing nationwide protests that erupted in mid-September. However, it is not clear whether this issue would be raised during the talks between Patrushev and his Iranian counterpart.

Protests may increase in the coming days to commemorate the regime’s brutal crackdown in #Zahedan, Sistan and Baluchistan Province on September 30. Read more in the daily #Iran update from @criticalthreats and @TheStudyofWar here. (1/6)

— Critical Threats (@criticalthreats) November 9, 2022

Russia keeps buying Iranian drones

Russia is continuing to secretly buy military equipment from Iran in order to circumvent international sanctions, Britain’s Sky News announced on Tuesday. “Russia flew EUR 140m in cash and a selection of captured UK and US weapons to Iran in return for dozens of deadly drones for its war in Ukraine,” Sky News reported following claims made by a security source.

As recalled by US analysts, Ukraine also reported that Tehran continues to equip Moscow with Mohajer, Arash and Shahed drones, which are provided by both state-owned and private Iranian companies.

The counteroffensive continues

According to ISW, Ukrainian forces are believed to have achieved small gains north-west of the town of Svatove in the Luhansk region. In turn, “Russian forces continued offensive operations around Bakhmut, Avdiivka, and in western Donetsk Oblast,” the institute stated.

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