Sat. Feb 24th, 2024

Angle down icon An icon in the shape of an angle pointing down. A general view of a damaged office block of the Moscow International Business Center after Ukrainian drones attacks in Moscow, Russia on July 30, 2023. Boris Alekseev/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images Ukraine is using new Beaver drones to attack targets within Russia’s borders.  The drones are being launched from Ukraine, reports indicate.  Ukraine has in recent days attacked Moscow, with drones crashing into a high-rise building. 

Ukraine is using a new, long-range drone, known as the “Beaver”, to bring the war deep into Russia’s borders, according to experts. 

Open-source intelligence experts have posted footage of recent drone attacks in Moscow, and said the aircraft appeared to be Ukrainian Beaver drones. 

The drones have an unusual shape, with an engine at the back end and a second pair of smaller wings near the front, according to footage and images posted online by Ukrainian outlet Euromaidan Press. 

This allows them to make abrupt changes in flight altitude and evade air defenses.

They carry an explosive payload, and have a range of up to 620 miles, meaning attacks on Russia can be launched from within Ukraine’s borders.

 

However, they appear to have at least one major weakness. 

Justin Bronk, a senior research fellow with the London-based Royal United Services Institute think tank, told Newsweek that the drones resemble the “Shahed” drones used by Russia to attack civilian targets in Ukraine.

But he added that it is unclear whether Beaver drones are as adept at evading navigation-jamming technology as Shahed drones, and might be vulnerable to the electronic defense systems set up in the Russian capital. 

He pointed to reports saying that two drones targeting Moscow Sunday had hit an office high rise, which is not a target that’s part of Ukrainian military doctrine. 

He said this indicated they had likely been diverted from their intended targets by Russian defenses. 

The “Beaver” drone is being built with the help of influencer Ihor Lachenkov, who has recently shed light on Ukraine’s secretive drone warfare program.

 

In an interview with The New York Times published Monday, Lachenkov confirmed he’s worked alongside the Ukrainian Security and Cooperation Center.

He added that he’d been asked to fundraise for the production of a remote “kamikaze drone” that can “fly very far.”

He said that he and his followers had been able to raise around half a million dollars for the project. 

Ukraine appears to have stepped up its drone attacks against Moscow in recent months. Since May, Ukraine is believed to have been behind attacks on sites including the Kremlin, military bases, and a wealthy Moscow suburb near Russian President Vladimir Putin’s residence. 

On Tuesday a drone crashed into a skyscraper in central Moscow for the second time in two days. Russian authorities accused Kyiv of staging the attack.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Sunday said that Ukraine was attacking sites in Russia, saying that “gradually, the war is returning to the territory of Russia — to its symbolic centers and military bases, and this is an inevitable, natural and absolutely fair process.”

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