A leading US manufacturer of advanced military surveillance drones announced on Wednesday that it is ready to sell drones to Ukraine for $1, urging the US government to approve the deal.
General Atomics Aeronautical Systems said it had been asking Washington for months to provide Ukraine with its powerful Gray Eagle and Reaper drones, which have been instrumental in surveillance and targeted strikes by U.S. forces in Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq and other areas of conflict.
According to the company, medium-altitude long-range drones are one of the most obvious force-forming technologies Ukraine needs in its war against Russia.
The US military has supplied Ukraine with several small attack and surveillance drones, but none with the advanced technology and long-range capabilities of General Atomics’ drones.
CEO Lyndon Blue said the company offered to train Ukrainian operators at no cost to the U.S. and Ukrainian governments and was willing to provide two of its training planes, along with other equipment, for a nominal price of $1. He indicated that Ukraine or a third party would have to pay for the preparation and replacement of the planes and the organization of the operation to airlift them to the battlefield.
“The offer is an unusual deal with no strings attached,” Blue said. “All that is required is the consent of the US government. In our view, it is long overdue to provide the intelligence to Ukrainian forces that is needed to win this war.”
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