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Russia and China Partner on Developing a New Attack Drone

Russia and China Partner on Developing a New Attack Drone
Iranian-made Shahed-136 'Kamikaze' drone flies over the sky of Kermanshah, Iran on March 7, 2024. Source: Getty Images

China and Russia are working together to develop a new attack drone modeled after the Iranian Shahed 136, according to the Bloomberg report.

The report says that negotiations between the two countries began in 2023 and that the development and testing of the new drone started this year.

While the new drone hasn’t been officially identified, Chinese defense websites and media outlets have reported on the development of an attack drone named “Sunflower 200”, that has a resemblance of the Iranian Shahed drone.

The US officials claim that China is holding off directly supplying weapons or artillery, as such a move could trigger a major escalation and potentially lead to sanctions against the world’s second-largest economy.

Since the beginning of the full-scale invasion, Russia has relied on Iranian Shahed drones for extensive attacks in Ukraine, as they are a cost-effective weapon for Russia.

Earlier in May, it was reported that Russia expanded its attack drone manufacturing, using Iranian technology, in its factory in Tatarstan.

While these drones are relatively cheap to manufacture, they pose a significant challenge for Ukraine’s defense systems.

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