Saturday, March 2, 2024

Ukraine responds to Iran over failed drone strike

The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry has accused Tehran of “supporting aggression”, claiming that the reported blast at a military industrial facility in Isfahan was “legitimate punishment.”

“Ukraine has repeatedly warned Iran: the consequences of supporting aggression against Ukraine will be much larger than the benefits of cooperation with Russia,” ministry spokesman Oleg Nikolenko wrote on Facebook, in Ukrainian.

“We do not know the cause of the blasts at Iranian facilities. But as a Persian proverb says, do not do evil to others, and you won’t injure yourself,” Nikolenko added.

His comment follows the news that the Iranian government had summoned the Ukrainian charge d’affaires in Tehran to explain a tweet by President Volodymyr Zelensky’s aide Mikhail Podoliak.

“War logic is inexorable and murderous. It bills the authors and accomplices strictly … Explosive night in Iran – drone and missile production, oil refineries. Ukraine did warn you,” Podoliak tweeted on Sunday.

The tweet amounted to a “tacit admission of Ukraine’s participation in the attack,” according to Iranian media outlets. Podoliak has previously called for strikes against the Iranian military industry, accusing Tehran in December of providing Russia with drones and missiles. The Iranian government denounced the “threatening rhetoric,” singling out Podoliak by name, and announced that “all political and legal responsibility for such statements” will be on the Ukrainian government.

According to Iranian authorities, the attack caused only minor damage to the facility and no casualties.

Ukraine and the US have accused Iran of supplying Russia with kamikaze drones and even ballistic missiles, but offered no evidence to back it up. Moscow and Tehran have repeatedly denied allegations that Russia was receiving Iranian drones and using them in Ukraine.

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