Iran has developed a new drone that could be used by Russia to strike Western air defense systems in Ukraine, Sky News reported on Wednesday.

A security source told Sky that the Shahed-107 drone, part of Iran’s Shahed family of unmanned aerial vehicles, could operate as both an explosive and reconnaissance aircraft. Several units are believed to have been offered to Russia as part of an initial $2 million deal.

Tehran is known to have supplied Moscow with significant quantities of Shahed-136 kamikaze drones, which can fly long distances and explode on impact, threatening Ukrainian infrastructure and air defenses.

The source said Iran’s development of the Shahed-107 shows “the significant force design work Iran is engaged in to support Russia’s interests regarding Ukraine.”

With a range of up to 1,500 km, the Shahed-107 can be launched from a vehicle and poses a major threat to Ukraine’s air defenses, which rely heavily on systems provided by the US and other Western countries.

The latest Shahed model is expected to be fitted with a video transmitter, providing Russian forces with the ability to select targets on the front in eastern Ukraine.

The source told Sky that the drone was tested in a trial by Russian and Iranian security forces at a base in central Iran.

The development of the new Shahed model is the latest evidence of growing armaments transfers between the two countries, with Moscow also expected to receive short-range ballistic missiles and surface-to-surface systems from Tehran in the coming months.

Russia “relies a lot on the Iranian drones, constantly modernizing them,” the source said. “They try to make them faster to force Ukrainian defense forces to use more expensive air defense systems.”

Moscow has ramped up domestic production of arms and is now assembling Shahed-136 drones at a factory 500 miles east of Moscow, data shows.

By late 2025, it is expected that Russia will produce about 4,000 of the kamikaze drones each year.

Russia’s use of relatively inexpensive drones and missiles against Ukraine is posing problems for the latter’s air defenses, including the US-provided Patriot system, which Kyiv has warned is running out of interceptor missiles.

Michael Clarke, a visiting professor at King’s College London, said Iran is trying to take advantage of a realignment in world politics.

He added: “(Iran) decided strategically, I think, to throw in their lot with Russia and by implication, also China, because they see a realignment of world politics taking place before our eyes, and they think that this will help put them on the side that will eventually prevail.”

Source » arabnews