The Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) showed in the video the first use of the Turkish reconnaissance and strike unmanned complex Bayraktar TB2 in hostilities in Donbass. On Tuesday, October 26, reports Vesti.ua with reference to journalist Yuri Butusov.
According to him, the positions of the 93rd mechanized brigade near the village of Granitnoe in the Donetsk region were fired upon from the self-proclaimed republics. “The Ukrainian Armed Forces sent Bayraktar TB2, and a bomb-guided Russian howitzer was destroyed,” the reporter said. The enemy could neither detect nor shoot down the drone.
Later, the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine confirmed the use of Bayraktar. The press service of the department noted that the Turkish drone did not cross the contact line.
The representative of the Luhansk People’s Republic (LPR) in the political subgroup of the contact group for resolving the situation in eastern Ukraine, Rodion Miroshnik, noted that Kiev “purposefully, even demonstratively,” violated the Minsk agreements. He recalled that since 2014, flights of military aircraft and foreign unmanned aerial vehicles have been banned.
According to him, the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valery Zaluzhny, having given the order to take off the drone, “wanted to spit on Kiev’s obligations.”
Federation Council member Alexei Pushkov said that the shelling of the Ukrainian Armed Forces in Donbass is associated with a “new enthusiasm” experienced in Kiev after being invited to a meeting of the NATO arms committee. According to the senator, Ukraine is also encouraged by the more frequent statements about the possibility of her admission to the alliance, the lobbying of this initiative from the UK and more and more positive signals from the United States. At the same time, the senator noted that a special role in this situation is played by the visit to Kiev of the head of the US Department of Defense Lloyd Austin and his assurances. “The game has begun for high stakes,” he stressed.
The parliamentarian also warned that Western countries that adhere to this course risk losing, as the Ukrainian authorities are ruled by primitive instincts. He explained that Kiev needs NATO membership only for the war in Donbass and the clash with Russia.
Earlier, the press secretary of the Russian president Dmitry Peskov said that the Kremlin considers the topic of cooperation between Kiev and Ankara in the military-technical sphere to be important, but expresses concern about the use of Turkish weapons by Ukraine for “strikes on its own citizens” in Donbass.
At the end of September, the Minister of Defense of Ukraine Andriy Taran and the general director of the Turkish company Bayraktar Haluk Bayraktar signed a memorandum of cooperation in the presence of President Volodymyr Zelensky. At the same time it became known that a service center for Bayraktar drones would be built in the Kiev region.
However, even before the document was signed, Ukraine received the coveted drones. In addition to the drones themselves, Ukrainian specialists visited Turkey, where they received training in drones management. After that, in July 2021, Kiev for the first time sent Bayraktar TB2 to patrol the Black Sea.
Bayraktar TB2 is an operational-tactical mid-altitude unmanned aerial vehicle with a long flight duration. Armed with four missiles or high-precision gliding bombs, the drone is capable of staying in the air for 12 to 24 hours and hitting targets at a distance of up to 8 kilometers.
The drone has been produced since 2014 by the private company Baykar Defense. Its first combat use occurred in the same year, the drone was used during an operation against the Kurds in eastern Turkey.
In addition to Ukraine, the foreign users of Bayraktar are the armed forces of Qatar and Azerbaijan. At the same time, the latter actively used this technology during the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh in the fall of 2020.
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