Russia has said that it has hit an American M-777 towed gun with a kamikaze drone.
The footage purports to show two Russian soldiers deploying the kamikaze drone, with it then seen being launched into the sky before first-person-view footage shows it hitting its target.
The images were obtained from the Russian Ministry of Defence (MoD) on Thursday, 6th April, along with a statement claiming: “A crew of the UAV Airborne Forces destroyed an M-777 American howitzer with a Lancet drone.”
The Russian MoD added: “Formations and military units of the Airborne Forces continue to carry out combat missions in the zone of the special military operation.
“A reconnaissance drone crew discovered a 155-mm American M-777 towed gun. For its destruction, a ‘Lancet’ drone was used, the launch of which was carried out by the crew of the Airborne UAV.
“Guidance and tracking of the Russian drone were carried out by operators in manual mode to exclude the slightest possibility of deviation from the target.”
We have not been able to independently verify the claims or the footage.
Russia invaded Ukraine on 24th February 2022 in what the Kremlin is still calling a “special military operation”. Today marks the 407th day of the full-scale war.
The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine reported that between 24th February 2022 and 6th April 2023, Russia had lost about 176,630 personnel, 3,631 tanks, 7,013 armoured combat vehicles, 2,714 artillery units, 532 multiple launch rocket systems, 281 air defence systems, 306 warplanes, 292 helicopters, 2,287 drones, 911 cruise missiles, 18 warships, 5,574 motor vehicles and fuel tankers, and 302 units of special equipment.
Russia has claimed that its casualties have been much lower but provides infrequent updates on its latest figures.
Poland’s President Andrzej Duda has released a joint statement with Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky saying that Poland will send 14 MiG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine.
Zelensky thanked his Polish counterpart for standing “shoulder to shoulder” with Ukraine and for providing displaced Ukrainians with shelter.
Poland has largely led the way to mobilise Western political and military support for Ukraine since the beginning of the Russian invasion.
Speaking in the Chinese capital Beijing, France’s President Emmanuel Macron cautioned that any country that helps “aggressor” Russia with its war in Ukraine would be considered an “accomplice”.
He also said that China has “a major role” to play in finding a path to peace in Ukraine. Macron said: “China, with its close relationship with Russia, which has been reaffirmed in recent days, can play a major role.”
Representatives of the United Kingdom, the United States, Albania and Malta walked out on Russia’s envoy for children’s rights, Russian Commissioner Maria Lvova-Belova, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of war crimes, while she addressed the United Nations Security Council via video link.
The UK and the US had previously blocked the informal meeting on Ukraine, which had been convened by Russia, from being webcast by the UN.
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has said that Russian President Vladimir Putin’s announcement that Russia will place tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus shows that a joint statement issued by Russia and China is nothing more than “empty promises”.
Stoltenberg also said that Russia is becoming increasingly dependent on China, warning that if China were to supply legal aid to Russia to assist it in its war in Ukraine, this would be a “historic mistake with profound implications”.
Spain’s Defence Minister Margarita Robles has said that the six Leopard 2A4 main battle tanks that her country has promised Ukraine will leave Spain in the second half of April.