Russia's attack on Ukraine continues near the frontline town of Bakhmut


  • Iran provided drones to Russia to use in the war in Ukraine
  • The US accused North Korea of supplying Russia with weapons and artillery shells
  • Syria last year said Russia's invasion of Ukraine is a 'correction of history and restoration of balance'

Nearly a dozen countries continue to support Russia and its full-scale invasion of Ukraine a year into the war.

Russia's President Vladimir Putin launched the invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24, 2022, in what he called a "special military operation" to "demilitarize" and "de-Nazify" Kyiv. The invasion was condemned by many countries globally but was also supported by several countries, some of which remain Russia's allies to this day.


Belarus is one of the biggest supporters of Russia's invasion of Ukraine. The country served as a launching pad for the Russian army, allowing Moscow's troops to use its land and airspace to deploy thousands of missiles toward Ukrainian territories.

However, Belarus has yet to send its own troops to join Russian forces in the war. Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko previously said there is "no way" Minsk would deploy soldiers to Ukraine unless it is attacked by Kyiv.


At the start of the invasion, Iran said it does not support the invasion but blamed the West for NATO's presence in Ukraine as the reason Russia for launching its military operation in Kyiv.

In January 2023, the Biden administration sanctioned Iran's aviation and defense sector for providing drones to Russia for use in its war in Ukraine. The sanctions included six executives and board members from Iran's Qods Aviation Industries, the country's top defense manufacturer, for producing the drones that were transferred to Russia.

Iran previously denied providing Russia with drones for use in Ukraine, but later acknowledged that it had sent a number of drones to Moscow months before the invasion began.

Despite the sanctions, Iran is smuggling drones into Russia using boats and Iranian state airline, the Guardian reported.

North Korea

North Korea has heavily criticized the United States and blamed it for Russia's invasion of Ukraine. In a January statement, Kim Yo-jong, the sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, said the U.S. crossed a "red line" for committing Abrams tanks to Ukraine to use in the war.

"Lurking behind this is the U.S. sinister intention to realize its hegemonic aim by further expanding the proxy war for destroying Russia," she said in the statement, as per translations from the Japan Times.

The United States previously accused North Korea of supplying Russia with weapons and artillery shells.


In February last year, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad praised Russia's invasion of Ukraine and said it is "a correction of history and restoration of balance which was lost in the world after the breakup of the Soviet Union."

Assad also accused Western nations of using "dirty methods to support terrorists in Syria and Nazis in Ukraine."


China has neither condemned nor endorsed Russia's invasion of Ukraine. It has also so far refrained from providing arms to Russia to use in the war. However, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg last Thursday said the alliance is seeing signs China might send lethal arms to Russia.

In addition, China has increased its imports of Russian oil and gas after Moscow was hit by numerous economic sanctions over its invasion. Beijing also abstained from voting on a United Nation resolution condemning the invasion of Ukraine and calling Russia to withdraw its troops from Ukrainian territory.


Like China, India has also refrained from condemning Russia's invasion of Ukraine. It also increased imports of Russian gas and oil since the war began, thereby helping fund the Kremlin's army.

India has also abstained from voting on UN resolutions that condemn the Russian invasion.


Myanmar's military junta, which overthrew the country's democratically elected government in 2021, said it supports Russia's invasion of Ukraine and said Moscow is working "to consolidate its sovereignty" in an effort to "show the world" that Moscow "is a world power."

Eritrea, Mali, Nicaragua

Eritrea, Mali and Nicaragua are three of the six countries that voted against the UN resolution calling for Russia to withdraw its troops from Ukraine and for peace to be restored to the region.

Prior to the UN's resolution, Eritrea and Mali abstained from voting on an October resolution denouncing Russia's annexation of four Ukrainian regions. Meanwhile, Nicaragua voted against that resolution.

Russia's President Putin takes part in an event marking Gazprom's 30th anniversary, via video link outside Moscow