Iran’s Involvement in Russia’s Military Operations in Ukraine from the International Law Perspective

Document Type : Original Article


Ph.D. Student of Public International Law, Faculty of Law and Political Science, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran



The conflict between Russia and Ukraine has been dragged into political and legal fields in parallel with the battlefield, and the international community, including Iran, has also been inevitably involved. The controversial debates around the role of Iran in supplying Russia with armed drones before Russia’s Military Operations in Ukraine raise the question of Iran's international responsibility in the ongoing war. Iran might not have violated international law by supplying Russia with armed drones unless Iran knowingly and intentionally has conducted an internationally wrongful act. Based on existing matters of fact and law, it is not evident whether international law has been violated by Iran's transfer of armed drones to Russia. Besides, Iranian drones brought military advantages to both sides: Russia could narrow down the impact of its attacks, respecting the principle of distinction, while Ukraine could target Iranian drones more easily than Russia’s missiles, which is compatible with Iran’s positive obligations under IHL.


Main Subjects

Articles in Press, Accepted Manuscript
Available Online from 22 January 2024
  • Receive Date: 13 March 2023
  • Revise Date: 08 October 2023
  • Accept Date: 17 November 2023