The revelation was contained in a 47-page document submitted by Ukraine’s government to the G7 governments in August. A copy of the document obtained by the Guardian named five European companies as the original manufacturers of the identified components, including a Polish subsidiary of a British multinational.
"Among the manufacturers are companies headquartered in the countries of the sanctions coalition: the United States, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Germany, Canada, Japan and Poland," the document claimed.
It also claimed that Iran has already diversified its production through the use of a Syrian factory, although Tehran continues to supply the components. (Related story: Iran finally admits it is supplying Russia with combat drones.)
During an overnight attack last week, Russia employed a total of 44 Shahed-136 drones, of which the Ukrainian Air Force claims to have successfully intercepted and destroyed all but 10 while they were in the air. This represents the largest deployment of Shahed drones in a single attack witnessed this month, marking a concerning trend.
"Russians are using Shahed drones more extensively," Ukrainian Air Force spokesman Yuri Ignat said in a recent national television broadcast. "Unfortunately, Russia now has the opportunity to manufacture its own. This is a new challenge against which we will respond. It is likely they will start attacking energy infrastructure again."
The Shahed-136 drones have recently undergone significant modifications, including updates to their warheads, engines, batteries, servomotors and structural components.
They now incorporate tungsten balls, which enhance the drones' destructive capabilities. This design change allows the shrapnel produced by the explosion to have a wider and more forceful impact, significantly increasing its effectiveness.
In addition to these enhancements, the drones now feature Russian-made components, suggesting a shift toward greater domestic production by Moscow.
The utilization of Shahed-136 drones with Western components has raised alarm due to their involvement in attacks on Ukrainian cities. This development underscores the evolving nature of the conflict and the growing sophistication of the drones employed by Russian forces.
It presents a formidable challenge for Ukrainian air defense systems and emphasizes the necessity of maintaining readiness and vigilance in the face of these evolving threats.
Among the suggested courses of action contained in the document are "missile strikes on the production plants of these UAVs in Iran, Syria, as well as on a potential production site in the Russian Federation."
"The above may be carried out by the Ukrainian defense forces if partners provide the necessary means of destruction," the document went on.
A fuel pump manufactured in Poland by the German company Ti Automotive G,bH was discovered in a Shahed-136, as well as a microcontroller with built-in flash memory and a very low-voltage drop regulator with inhibitor made by the Swiss firm STMicroelectronics. Ti's parent company is the British multinational TI Fluid.
Also discovered inside the drone was an integrated circuit of a buffer network driver and a transistor made by International Rectifier, a subsidiary of the German firm Infineon Technologies AG.
In the previous Shahed-131 model, Ukrainian experts identified a 14-channel, customizable integrated power management circuit and a microprocessor made by the Dutch company NXP Semiconductor and a power transistor and integrated circuit from International Rectifier.
With more Shaheds at its disposal, Russia can continue to force Ukraine to expend its precious, and in most cases, far more expensive air defense munitions trying to shoot them down.
The drones also help the Russians save up on their remaining cruise and short-range ballistic missiles.
Learn more about the conflict in Ukraine at UkraineWitness.com.
Watch a Russian drone hit a Leopard 2A5 tank.
This video is from The Prisoner channel on Brighteon.com.
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