KYIV ($1=36.90 Ukrainian Hryvnias) — Iran’s Shahed-136 drones became famous in Ukraine. Russia has purchased hundreds of drones from Iran. Russia launched them in airstrikes against Ukrainian cities, energy infrastructure and civilian sites.
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Shahed-136 are kamakazet drones. They are used in a swarm of 12 drones mounted from a common rack. For this drone to be effective, it must be part of a swarm. In this way, the enemy’s air defense system is confused. Coupled with a simultaneous missile attack from cruise missiles, drones become generally more effective.
At first, Moscow stubbornly denied using Iranian drones. However, after debris from them, or unexploded drones, began to appear in public space, the Kremlin accepted the fact and admitted it with considerable effort. Especially since previously Tehran officially announced that it had sold the drones in question to Russia.
The Shahed drone attacks nearly a month ago gave access to independent organizations and investigative journalists to assess the wreckage of Iranian drones. NGO Statewatch and the Ukrainian civil society group Independent Anti-Corruption Commission [NAKO] are among the organizations that investigated and have already published their reports.
Although the Shahed-136 is not some high-tech drone device like those of the US or China, it turns out that Iranian drones have very little “Iranian about them”.
Canada, US and Japan
The Shahed-136 contains a ceramic antenna manufactured by the Canadian company Tallysman Wireless. The investigation, led by Inna Popovich was conducted by a Statewatch project called Trap Aggressor. It identified more than 30 EU- and US-based companies whose parts were used in the production of Iran’s kamikaze drones.
The report also states that the drone’s servo drive comes from American manufacturer Hitec USA Group. However, the list does not stop there. Japan was also included among the countries whose domestic components were found among the remains of Shahed-136. One of the most famous Japanese brands, Panasonic, is present in the structure of the Iranian drone with self-made power elements.
Tallysman’ s explanation
The Canadian company Tallysman Wireless is already familiar with the case and does not deny that its elements are part of the Iranian drones. The company is fully sympathetic to Ukraine and does not trade with Russia or Iran. The company says that the distribution network does not trade with these countries either, but most likely distributors using “false company facades” are involved to hide their intent.
However, it is important to note that Canadian antennas are not subject to export controls, making it even easier to ship these devices to countries outside of the customer list. As an example, the company said these antennas are used in navigation systems, even those used by automobiles.
Experts say that when a product is dual-use and subject to export control with an export license issued, it can be easily traced and difficult to sell. However, this is not the case with products that are not subject to such control.
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