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Dagbladet in Kyiv - a new threat

Dagbladet in Kyiv – a new threat

KYIV (Dagbladet): – Of course we are worried, 22-year-old Anna tells Dagbladet.

We meet her in the center of the capital, where she also works as a receptionist. 18 hours ago, a plane alarm woke her up at her home on the outskirts of town. Now she is still waiting to hear more from the authorities about the threat and yesterday’s attack.

Concern: 22-year-old Anna lives in the suburbs of Kyiv. Pictured: Morten Risberg
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– We do our best to live normally with flight alerts and bad news. She says we are very tired as she shakes her head.

Anna and the rest of Kievans are well accustomed to aerial threats, and in recent months several missiles have been directed at the capital. But last night’s attack was of a completely new kind.

sold to Russia

Known flight alert warned of Iranian-made Shahed-136 kamikaze aircraft. The drones are said to be specifically designed to avoid air defenses, and Iran recently sold an unknown number of units to Russia.

In Kyiv: Journalist Morten Reisberg delivers from the Ukrainian capital Dagbladet.

In Kyiv: Journalist Morten Reisberg delivers from the Ukrainian capital Dagbladet.
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In addition to the attacks in Kyiv, Ukrainian media reported that Odessa was also attacked by Iranian drones on Wednesday of this week.

Anna herself did not hear or see the drones or the influences. Others near the capital, however, witnessed the sounds of drones flying over rooftops.

– It seemed so silly. Igor Novikov, who lives outside Kyiv with his wife and three-year-old daughter, says it looked like a motorcycle in the air.

Iranian Drone: The town of Bila Tserkva, southwest of Kyiv, was attacked by a drone on Wednesday this week.  Residents who spoke to Dagbladet are concerned about the use of new weapons.  Photo: Sergey Sobinsky/AFP/NTB

Iranian Drone: The town of Bila Tserkva, southwest of Kyiv, was attacked by a drone on Wednesday this week. Residents who spoke to Dagbladet are concerned about the use of new weapons. Photo: Sergey Sobinsky/AFP/NTB
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– They come by air, and immediately after that they are blown up by our air defense system, says Novikov, who is also a former adviser to President Zelensky.

But is this the best Putin can do? He laughs that the next thing will probably be a slingshot with oil.

However, many drones survived the anti-aircraft weapons, and hit the town of Bila Tserkva, 90 kilometers from Kyiv.

Ukraine: In the dead of night, the capital saw a new kind of aerial threat.  Pictured: Morten Risberg

Ukraine: In the dead of night, the capital saw a new kind of aerial threat. Pictured: Morten Risberg
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damaged infrastructure

– The infrastructure was badly damaged, and there were at least six explosions in total, Irina Bryanichnikova, a spokeswoman for the police in the Kyiv region, told Dagbladet on Wednesday afternoon.

Attacking Odessa: Russia has escalated its drone attacks against the Odessa region with Iranian drones. Video: Telegram / Twitter / Operational Command of Ukraine in the South. Reporter: Vigard Krueger.
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At that time, she herself had just gone to the scene of the accident and witnessed the devastation.

The roofs of a number of buildings were destroyed and a massive fire broke out. The fire service was still putting out the flames when we got there at 12:30 today, she says.

Witnessed the destruction: spokeswoman for the Kyiv region police Irina Bryanichnikova.  Photo from June 2022. Photo: Morten Riesberg

Witnessed the destruction: spokeswoman for the Kyiv region police Irina Bryanichnikova. Photo from June 2022. Photo: Morten Riesberg
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Local police forces had moved in at 2 am on Wednesday, after eyewitnesses were called and reported the drone attacks.

– Drones fly very low, so it is well known that you can shoot them down with ordinary weapons, says Bryanichnikova.

Fortunately, the spokesman said, only one person was injured.

cause headaches

In addition to the six drones that caused explosions in Bila Tserkva, six more were shot down by the air force, Colonel Görg Ignat, a spokesman for the Ukrainian Air Force, confirms in Dagbladet.

– Three were shot down by fighter planes, and three by air defense missiles.

Lack of funds: Ukraine's air force spokesman Yuri Ignat says Ukraine lacks the means to effectively shoot down kamikaze drones.  Pictured: Morten Risberg

Lack of funds: Ukraine’s air force spokesman Yuri Ignat says Ukraine lacks the means to effectively shoot down kamikaze drones. Pictured: Morten Risberg
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He acknowledges that this type of drone is causing headaches for the Ukrainian Air Force.

Ukraine lacks the means to effectively shoot down such kamikaze drones. We need an extra ability to take down attacks like this and also prevent them. Ukraine is a big country, and we need outside contributions to strengthen our air defense – especially from Western allies.

Yesterday’s explosions were not the first time that Iranian drones were used on Ukrainian soil. At the end of September, Odessa was a frequent target of similar attacks with Shahed-136. Until then, some were actually taken out of the Ukrainian air defense system, while others caused explosions in the port city. Two civilians were also said to have been killed in one of the attacks.

Iran’s contribution to weapons did not go unnoticed, and after the drone attacks on Odessa, the Ukrainian authorities decided to limit the presence of Iranian diplomats in the country.

From the scene: Irina Bryanichnikova took this photo during the investigations at the crime scene.  Photo: Irina Bryanichnikova

From the scene: Irina Bryanichnikova took this photo during the investigations at the crime scene. Photo: Irina Bryanichnikova
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When asked if the Ukrainian Air Force expected more attacks in the future, the colonel answered so;

– Of course it would. Otherwise, why were four such drones sent from Iran to Russia?

Cheaper, often, more

Igor Novikov agrees with this.

– These drones may be dangerous for the next two or three days, until the Kyiv air defense learns how to deal with such a threat. This technology is so primitive that in a short time there will probably be nothing to fear. But yes, we definitely have a new challenge to deal with.

However, the former adviser believes that kamikaze drones pose a new type of danger, as they could serve as an alternative to more expensive, more accurate and more destructive missiles.

These drones are cheaper, and therefore can be used more often and with several devices at the same time.

Fortunately, drones do not cause much damage.

– Despite the fact that half of the drones found their target, there was only some damage to the infrastructure in yesterday’s attack, Dagbladet told.

Emergency data: from where the Iranian drones fell.  Photo: Irina Bryanichnikova

Emergency data: from where the Iranian drones fell. Photo: Irina Bryanichnikova
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He also points out that drone technology shows that Western sanctions on Iran are not working as intended.

It turns out that the Iranian drones contain Intel processors. This means that sanctions against Iran are not working, and that Western technology and know-how are being used to develop weapons that end up attacking Ukraine.

– This is a sign of the hypocrisy that is happening in the world today.

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