Iran says deal reached to buy Russia's Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jets
Iran has reached a deal with Russia to buy the cutting-edge Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jets, according to state media.
"Moscow is ready to deliver the fighter jets to Iran," the country's mission to the United Nations was quoted as saying in the official Islamic Republic News Agency.
"Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jets were technically approved by the Iranian aviation experts, and therefore... Iran finalised the contract to buy those planes," it said.
There was no immediate confirmation of the deal from Russia.
According to reports earlier in the year, Iran had placed an order for 24 of Russia's most advanced jets along with other military hardware, including air defence systems, missile systems and helicopters.
The deal comes amid increased defence cooperation between the two countries in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Reports suggest that Moscow has bought several hundred drones from Tehran, with another 1,000 ordered. The use of Iranian-made drones by Russia in the Ukraine conflict has been widely documented.
Iran's drone and missile advances in recent decades have been primarily driven by a lack of air power, which Tehran is now looking to rebuild with the new Russian jets deal.
In the past, Russia has been wary of giving Iran a military edge in the region, but that has changed due to Moscow's global isolation over Ukraine and increasing reliance on Iran.
The "unprecedented" deal means that Iran-Russia military cooperation "has entered into a completely new phase", geopolitics and security expert Hamidreza Azizi previously told Middle East Eye.
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