The Biden administration is reportedly working to curb Iran’s ability to deliver drones to Russian troops for use in Ukraine by expanding efforts to choke Tehran’s production of the unmanned aerial vehicles.
The New York Times reported on the expanded push Wednesday, citing unnamed intelligence, military and national security officials. The administration is focusing on depriving Iran the parts it needs to produce the drones.
Adrienne Watson, a spokeswoman for the National Security Council, told the newspaper officials are “looking at ways to target” Iranian drone production “through sanctions, export controls, and talking to private companies whose parts have been used in the production.”
“We are assessing further steps we can take in terms of export controls to restrict Iran’s access to technologies used in drones,” Watson said.
The U.S. is also helping Ukrainian defenders to target sites where drones are being launched and are providing equipment to detect the drones early after launch, according to The Times.
Iranian drones are mostly assembled through parts produced in the U.S., Europe and Asia, according to a November report from a weapons research group, Conflict Armament Research.
U.S. companies with parts ending up in the explosive drones, including Dallas-based Texas Instruments, have condemned the use of their technology in the drones.
CNN reported this month the Biden administration was creating a task force to investigate how U.S. tech was ending up in the Iranian drones.
Iranian drones have been deployed for widespread use in Ukraine since the fall. Russian forces have used them to attack critical infrastructure and energy grids in the country.
The U.S. has sanctioned Iranian entities and two companies in the United Arab Emirates allegedly involved with manufacturing the drones.