Ukraine confirms the first combat use of Turkish drone against separatists
General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine claim that one of its Bayraktar TB2 drones has destroyed an artillery piece belonging to Russia-backed militants in the east of the country.
A video was posted on governmental social media channels, capturing what appears to be a D-20 122 mm howitzer being destroyed in an explosion.
According to the post, a battery of howitzers started shelling Ukrainian positions, defying a ceasefire and wounding two Ukrainian soldiers, one of whom later died. In response to the attack, a Bayraktar TB2 drone has been scrambled. Reportedly, it destroyed an artillery piece without crossing the frontline.
According to Ukrainian news outlet Censor.net, a MAM-C semi-active laser guided bomb was used.
Ukraine acquired the first batch of Bayraktar TB2 drones in 2019, and has received several additional batches since then, including a number of drones specifically designed for the navy.
The first operational use of the new drones took place in July 2021, when a drone conducted a reconnaissance operation.
In recent years, Ukraine has made numerous attempts to modernize its air force with combat drones. As well as buying Turkish-made aircraft, Antonov announced the development of an indigenous design. The country has also been attempting to organize domestic production of Turkish drones.
Since 2014, Ukraine has been involved in a long-standing conflict in the eastern part of the country, with parts of the Donbas region occupied by self-declared republics
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