According to the Ukrainian government minister in charge of technology, Ukraine has purchased some 1,400 drones, mainly for surveillance, and aims to build military variants that can strike the explosive drones Russia has employed throughout its invasion of the nation.
Mykhailo Fedorov, minister of digital transformation, recently referred to Russia’s war in Ukraine as the “first significant battle of the internet age” in an interview with The Associated Press.
He attributed the transformation of the fight to drones and satellite internet networks like Elon Musk’s Starlink.
Ukraine has invested in small unmanned aerial vehicles like the Fly Eye for intelligence gathering, battlefield surveillance, and reconnaissance.
Now that we are essentially equipped with reconnaissance drones, the next phase will be strike drones, according to Fedorov.
Both drones that explode and drones that fly up to 10 kilometers and hit targets are present.
The future would see “more missions with strike drones,” he said, without going into further detail.
“We are discussing the drones, unmanned aerial vehicles, and unmanned aerial systems that Ukraine is now creating.
It will be the next technological evolution, so whatever,” he remarked.
Recently, Russian authorities have claimed that Ukrainian drone attacks have occurred on their military installations.
On Monday, they claimed that Russian forces shot down a drone approaching the Engels airbase, which is more than 600 kilometers (over 370 miles) from the Ukrainian border.
According to the Russian military, three servicemen were killed by debris, but no aircraft were harmed.
The facility is home to the Tu-95 and Tu-160 strategic bombers with nuclear weapons used to attack Ukraine.
The Ukrainian government has never openly admitted carrying out such drone operations, but they have made cryptic references to other forms of reprisal Russia may anticipate for its conflict in Ukraine, including inside Russian territory.
According to Fedorov, Ukraine is researching and developing drones that could combat and destroy other drones.
Along with rocket, cruise missile, and artillery attacks in recent weeks, Russia has also utilized Iranian-made Shahed drones for its airstrikes in Ukrainian territory.