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Russia Upgrading Naval Fleet’s Counter-Drone Capabilities

Russia is equipping its naval fleet with new protection systems to counter surface and underwater drones.

Several vessels have been equipped with the systems, including kinetic and electronic warfare equipment, Izvestia revealed citing sources.

According to the Moscow-based outlet, additional electronic warfare stations and special firing points featuring machine guns are expected to be added to the vessels. 

Ukraine’s Marine Drones

The move comes as Ukraine has deployed marine drones to attack Russia’s Black Sea fleet near Sevastopol.

During one attack on May 24, three fast-moving Ukrainian drone boats attacked the intelligence ship Ivan Khurs. 

The Russian Ministry of Defense described the incident as an “unsuccessful attempt” by the Ukrainians to attack the ship, releasing a video to back its claim. 

The video shows a large-caliber machine gun or cannon firing at a fast-approaching boat. A round then hits the boat and it explodes. 

However, a new video later showed one of the boats successfully evading the enemy fire and ramming into a ship, which is reportedly a visual match to a Yuriy Ivanov-class vessel. 

Only two ships of the class have ever been built: one serving the Russian Northern Fleet and the other the Black Sea fleet.

What Russian Military Experts Say

“Since such a weapon has appeared — both reconnaissance and strike drones — it will now be used, including by terrorists, and this is possible anywhere in the world,” Izvestia quoted the ex-chief of the Russian Navy’s main headquarters Admiral Valentin Selivanov.

“Our reconnaissance assets must detect the signal that controls this drone and suppress it.”

Military historian Dmitry Boltenkov told the outlet that the Russian naval ships should deploy a combination of means of observation: “optical, radar, hydroacoustic. The received data should be transmitted to the weapons control posts.”

“And from weapons, large-caliber machine guns show themselves effectively. In the Black Sea Fleet, all more or less large and valuable ships should definitely be equipped with such systems. Because the enemy is inventive, you can’t live the old fashioned way — you have to adapt.”

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