Ukraine’s army says its drone approval process has been streamlined, as Moscow accuses Kyiv of strikes

Ukraine’s defense minister has said that the army has significantly streamlined its protocol for approving unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and other weaponry, a revelation that comes days after Moscow accused Kyiv of drone strikes on air bases deep inside its territory.

“The procedures for admission of weapons and military equipment to operate in the Armed Forces were significantly simplified. This has already had a significant effect, primarily in the field of UAVs,” Oleksii Reznikov said.

Reznikov explained that the previous process to approve one or two drones could take up to two years. In comparison, a new system has allowed seven Ukrainian-made UAVs to be green-lit for operation in the Ukrainian armed forces over the past 30 days.

He added there are 19 pending applications for UAVs.

Some background: Russia unleashed a fresh wave of missiles towards Ukraine earlier this week, as it accused Kyiv of striking military airfields inside Russia — raising the stakes for Moscow at a time when its war on Ukraine is faltering. Russia has said that Ukrainian drones carried out three strikes on its bases, yet two of the targets are hundreds of miles inside Russian territory and beyond the reach of Ukraine’s declared drone arsenal.

On Thursday, Sevastopol’s Russian-appointed governor Mikhail Razvozhaev said that Russia’s Black Sea Fleet had shot down an unmanned aerial vehicle off the Crimean Peninsula. The Kremlin said Crimea and Sevastopol faced the risk “terrorist attacks” from Ukraine, but said the region is ready to repel them.

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