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Canada to donate over 800 drones to Ukraine

by Abbey Fenbert February 20, 2024 4:44 AM 2 min read
Canadian Defense Minister Bill Blair at NATO headquarters in Brussels, Belgium on Feb. 14, 2024. (John Thys / AFP via Getty Images)
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The Canadian government will send over 800 SkyRanger R70 multi-mission drones to Ukraine, Canada's Defense Minister Bill Blair announced on Feb. 19.

"As the second anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine approaches, these drones will address some of Ukraine’s most urgent defensive needs," the ministry said in a press release.

The SkyRangers come equipped with autonomous navigation systems and can carry payloads, including munitions, of up to 3.5 kilograms. They are designed for surveillance and reconaissance missions, and can also be used to transport supplies.

The drones are valued at over $70 million. Funding for the weapons comes from a military aid package for Ukraine worth 500 million Canadian dollars ($368 million) that Canada announced in June 2023.

"Today’s announcement ensures that Ukraine has the drones it needs to detect and identify targets which are critical to Ukraine’s ongoing fight. Canada will stand with Ukraine for as long as it takes,” Blair said.

The drone delivery follows Canada's announcement on Feb. 14 at the 19th Ramstein-format meeting of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group (UDCG) that it would donate $44 million to support Ukraine's future fleet of F-16 fighter jets.

Canada has donated approximately $7.2 billion dollars to Ukraine since February 2022, including $1.8 billion in military aid.

Deadly drone arms race intensifies as Ukraine, Russia embrace the future of war
At this stage of a war that could last years more, both Ukraine and Russia are getting serious with their drone game: ramping up production while always looking to come up with new innovations.
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