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U.S. and Allies Warn Iran Not to Send Missiles to Russia

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U.S. and Allies Warn Iran Not to Send Missiles to Russia

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The United States and six other major world powers warned Iran on Friday not to provide ballistic missiles to Russia to aid Moscow’s war against Ukraine and threatened to retaliate if it does by cutting off Iranian air travel to Europe, among other measures.

The Group of 7 nations issued the warning in a statement coordinated with the White House in hopes of making Tehran think twice before arming Russia even further at a time when American security aid to Ukraine remains blocked in Congress by Republican leaders, who are following the lead of former President Donald J. Trump.

The Reuters news agency reported last month that Iran had already provided Russia with around 400 surface-to-surface missiles, including many from the Fateh-110 family of short-range weapons capable of striking targets as far as 435 miles away. Biden administration officials said on Friday that they had not been able to confirm that Iran had already transferred missiles but assume that it intends to.

The G7 leaders said they were “extremely concerned” about reports of possible Iranian transfers. “We call on Iran not to do so, as it would add to regional destabilization and represent a substantive material escalation in its support for Russia’s war in Ukraine — an aggression which constitutes a flagrant violation of international law and the U.N. Charter,” they said in their statement.

“Were Iran to proceed with providing ballistic missiles or related technology to Russia, we are prepared to respond swiftly and in a coordinated manner including with new and significant measures against Iran,” the leaders added.

Biden administration officials said that one example of a response would be to end flights into Europe by Iran Air, the country’s flagship national carrier, further isolating the nation.

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