Russia has ordered an upgraded version of the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) Searcher 2 unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) manufactured only from locally produced components.
The contract with the Ural Civil Aviation Plant (UZGA) was revealed on 5 February by Deputy Defence Minister Alexey Krivoruchko, who oversees equipment procurement, during a visit to the company’s main UAV assembly plant at Ekaterinburg.
According to the Russian Ministry of Defence (MoD), 10 new Forpost-R systems will be delivered over the next three years. Since 2011, UZGA has been assembling kits of basic Searcher 2s at its Ekaterinburg site, and the system has seen operational use over the Donbass and in Syria, where it has become the mainstay of Russian battlefield surveillance operations.
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