Main menu


Russia will review working with UN chief if it inspects drones in Ukraine

featured image

by Michelle Nichols

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) – Russia said on Wednesday it would reconsider cooperation with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres if Western powers send experts to Ukraine to examine drones it says were made in Iran and used by Moscow in violation of a UN resolution.

Russia’s Deputy Ambassador to the UN, Dmitry Polyanskiy, urged Guterres and his staff to “refrain from participating in any illegitimate investigations” after a closed-door meeting of the UN Security Council on Moscow’s use of drones.

“Otherwise we will have to reevaluate our cooperation with them, which is not in anyone’s interest. We don’t want to do that, but we will have no choice,” he told reporters.

Polyanskiy did not elaborate.

The Security Council has met on Russia’s use of drones in Ukraine at the request of the United States, France, and Britain, who allege that the drones are Iranian-made and violate a 2015 resolution by Moscow ratifying the Iran nuclear deal.

Tehran has denied supplying drones to Moscow, while Russia has denied that its forces used Iranian drones to attack Ukraine.

“Iran has an obligation not to export these weapons,” British Deputy Ambassador to the UN James Kariuki said on Twitter after the meeting. “As a member of the UN, Iran has a responsibility not to support Russia’s war of aggression,” he said.

Ukraine this week invited UN experts to examine some downed drones. Guterres reports to the Security Council twice a year – traditionally in June and December – on the implementation of the 2015 resolution. Any assessment of UAVs in Ukraine will likely be included in this report.

“In policy, we are always ready to examine and analyze any information brought to us by Member States,” UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said on Wednesday. said.


Iran and Russia argue that Guterres does not have the authority to send experts to Ukraine to examine the drones.

In a letter to Guterres on Wednesday, Iran’s ambassador to the UN, Amir Saeid Iravani, said Ukraine’s invitation to UN experts had “no legal basis” and told Guterres “any abuse of the resolution and UN officials on matters related to the Ukraine war”. urged to “prevent”.

French Ambassador to the UN Nicolas de Riviere said Guterres “has a clear mandate twice a year to report on all this and make technical assessments, so I think the UN secretariat has to go and it will go.”

According to the 2015 resolution, a conventional arms embargo on Iran was in effect until October 2020.

But Ukraine and Western powers argue that the decision includes restrictions on missiles and related technologies until October 2023, and could cover the export and purchase of advanced military systems such as drones.

The UN Security Council is unable to take a major step forward on the war in Ukraine, as Russia, along with China, the USA, France and the UK, has veto power over the 15-member body.

Dujarric declined to comment on Polyanskiy’s words.

Guterres and senior UN officials are in talks with Russia to extend and expand the July 22 agreement that restarted Ukraine’s Black Sea grain and fertilizer exports. If no deal is reached, the deal could expire next month.

Polyanskiy said that Russia is not optimistic about the renewal as grain and fertilizer exports are blocked. But when asked whether Russian co-operation on the Black Sea grain deal would be at risk if Guterres sends experts to Ukraine to look at drones, Polyanskiy said, “I have not been directly involved so far.”

(reported by Michelle Nichols; edited by Grant McCool)