Ukraine is already in the process of acquiring long-range drones with the ability to fly up to 1,000 kilometers, Yuriy Shchyhol, Head of State Service of Special Communications and Information Protection of Ukraine (SSSCIP), said in an interview with Radio NV on May 18.
“But we are definitely purchasing them, and they will fulfill their tasks according to the General Staff’s plan,” Shchyhol said.
He further disclosed that over the past month, Ukraine has procured and delivered over a thousand drones to the Armed Forces, with a similar number being provided by volunteers.
“Throughout May and June, we will fully meet the needs of the Armed Forces, despite the fact that they are falling almost by the dozens every day,” he declared.
Shchyhol also revealed that prior to Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, there were 30 companies manufacturing drones, but now the number has increased to over 90.
“Each company has two, three, five, or even seven types of drones in their product range, which are being purchased today,” he explained.
“So, we have several hundred types of drones, and each unit, each military formation, trains on the ones that are convenient for them. Conducting reconnaissance, for example, near Bakhmut, near Avdiivka, and in the southern part of the country, involves completely different tasks. The technical characteristics of these drones for long distances will also vary. There are global brands that are part of NATO’s arsenal, which are quite expensive kit, but they work in conjunction with artillery and help immediately guide artillery fire on targets. That is why we need this ‘menagerie’ so that the enemy cannot quickly figure out how to deal with it.”
Shchyhol stated that approximately 50 companies are currently contracted to manufacture over 1,000 drones by the end of the year.
“Currently, 50 companies are in the contracting stage, and all of them indicate figures exceeding a thousand. So, you can do the math,” said Shchyhol.
“Our goal is to have 200,000 drones by the end of the year. I am confident that this project, which is financed by the state with almost 40 billion, will be completed by the end of the year.”
The official also announced that over the past six months, 25 schools in Ukraine have trained 10,000 military personnel for the Armed Forces and Defense Forces who are now proficient in operating any type of drone.
“Our goal is to train another 10,000 pilots within three months,” he added.
On May 15, reports emerged that the United Kingdom will transfer hundreds of combat drones with a range of over 200 kilometers to Ukraine.
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