Ukraine will acquire the Bayraktar TB2 unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV).
Several months after reports emerged of the deal, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko confirmed on January 12, 2019, that Ukraine will acquire Turkey’s Bayraktar Tactical Block 2 (TB2) UCAV. He said in a statement on his Twitter page, “As we previously agreed with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, we signed an agreement on purchasing Turkish armed drones Bayraktar TB2s for the Ukrainian army.”
He continued, “These newest attack drone will aid the army on operational and tactical levels, and besides having high-tech characteristics, can be equipped with additional modern high-accuracy missile systems to destroy armored units or marine targets with fortified positions.”
Ukraine has acquired at least six of the UCAVs for its military, along with ground control stations and related support. As noted by President Poroshenko, the drones can be armed, though he did not confirm what armaments were purchased for them. Financial details of the agreement have not been disclosed.
According to Turkish media, the drones are to be delivered within the next year. Ukraine will put them to use patrolling its east, in particular, where the military is engaged in a stand-off against separatist militants backed by Russia.
The Bayraktar TB2 is manufactured by Turkish firm Baykar Makina. The drone carries a range of over 150 kilometers, with a maximum altitude of close to 7 kilometers. Bayraktar TB2s have a maximum take-off weight of 560 kilograms and carry a payload of up to 50 kilograms.