Iran is shipping arms to Russia via a smuggling route into Syria, which would violate the terms of United Nations Security Council resolution 2231, which implemented the 2015 nuclear deal, according to Western intelligence agencies.“In June, two airplanes from Iran flew directly to the Khmeimim Air Base [southeast of Latakia] – the most important Russian military base in Syria – in order to bring the military equipment for transport to Russia,” Benjamin Weinthal reported Tuesday in The Jerusalem Post citing an earlier report carried by the German newspaper Welt am Sonntag.
The military equipment was then loaded onto trucks and brought to the Syrian port of Tartus. The equipment was then shipped to Novorossiysk, Russia’s main port in the Black Sea.
According to the German report, the weapons were sent to Syria for maintenance using the “new smuggling route.”
Resolution 2231 prohibits Iran from “the supply, sale, or transfer of arms or related materiel from Iran by their nationals or using their flag vessels or aircraft and whether or not originating in the territory of Iran,” unless approved in advance by the UN Security Council.
The report showed a satellite image of an Iranian Boeing jet at the Khmeimim Air Base. The illicit use of civilian aircraft for military purposes could place a new obstacle in Iran’s efforts to buy $3 billion in airplanes from Boeing. The proposed sale is already facing opposition in Congress.
Earlier this month the United Kingdom, France, and Germany joined the United States in condemning Iran’s “threatening and provocative” ballistic missile program in a letter written to UN Secretary General António Guterres. The letter also accused Iran of defying the language of the resolution governing ballistic missile development.