Pro-Russian DPR Says Ukrainians Using American Kamikaze Drones Due to Lack of Artillery

The pro-Russian Donetsk People's Republic says that Ukraine is using American-made "kamikaze drones" because the "American artillery" being provided by their allies is in short supply.

Images obtained from the DPR on Wednesday show military and trench warfare operations in eastern Ukraine before a soldier speaks about American "kamikaze drones" that he says are being used by the Ukrainian forces.

In the footage, the unnamed officer from the People's Militia of the DPR says: "The Ukrainian army used imported Kamikaze drones. They were used against my fighters at their position twice. Both times unsuccessfully, no personnel were injured. Their position was not damaged."

Ukraine kamikaze drone from America
A soldier with the pro-Russian Donetsk People's Republic shows an American kamikaze drone the DPR says was used against them in the area of Kamianka, Ukraine. @nm_dnr/Zenger

"It's called Switchblade 300. Small, 50 centimeters, but very fast; it flies above the ground, selects a target, it also has a camera on its side. I don't think it's effective."

The Switchblade 300 is an American-built, expendable, "kamikaze" drone that is used by several branches of the U.S. military.

The soldier then says: "It selects a target, makes a circle, picks up speed, and flies to death. According to my thoughts and my fighters' thoughts, there are about 200 grams of charges, it has no fragments."

Another person, perhaps the person filming, then asks: "And what about the hull?"

The soldier answers: "The hull is carbon fiber. It had two guide wings at the back. It buzzes very loudly, it has a characteristic sound. It cannot be confused with an ordinary quadcopter, it is very loud.

"They began to use it, as there is not enough American artillery. But we can handle it!

"And here it is, look! They attack the city, the air defense intercepts them, but they shoot again!"

A statement obtained from the DPR on Wednesday also said that they are "continuing to destroy the firing points of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the Avdiivka direction."

Avdiivka is a city in eastern Ukraine's Donetsk Oblast region.

The statement added: "The fighters of the Armed Forces of Ukraine are forced to use American kamikaze drones against the fighters of the People's Militia of the DPR in the area of the settlement of Kamenka.

"The pressure of the artillery of the people's militia on the positions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine has been increased to the limit: a counter-battery fight and fire is being carried out on the identified positions and firing points of Ukrainian militants."

Zenger News contacted Russian and Ukrainian officials for comment but had not received a reply at the time of writing.

Russian troops invaded Ukraine on February 24 in what the Kremlin is still calling a "special military operation." June 16 marks the 113th day of the campaign.

The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine reported that between February 24 and June 15, Russia had lost 32,750 personnel, 1,440 tanks, 3,528 armored fighting vehicles, 722 pieces of artillery, 230 multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS), 97 anti-aircraft units, 213 warplanes, 179 helicopters, 2,485 motor vehicles and fuel tankers, 13 boats, 591 unmanned aerial vehicles, 55 special equipment units and 129 cruise missiles were shot down.

In related news, French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi arrived in Kyiv on Thursday for talks. They are reportedly hoping to rebut what has been perceived as their lukewarm support for Ukraine.

Meanwhile, Washington has told China it risks ending up on the "wrong side of history" following Chinese President Xi Jinping's assurances to Russian President Vladimir Putin that Beijing supports Russian "sovereignty."

Thousands of civilians remain trapped in the key eastern Ukrainian city of Severodonetsk, where the water supply is reported to be dwindling. Hundreds of civilians are taking shelter in the bunkers beneath the city's Azot chemical plant.

Luhansk Oblast governor Serhiy Haidai said earlier this week that all three bridges into Severodonetsk had been destroyed, making delivering supplies and evacuating civilians impossible.

President Joe Biden has promised Kyiv another billion dollars in security assistance and weapon, and General Mark Milley, who chairs the Joint Chiefs of Staff, says Russia has lost around 20 to 30 percent of its armored force during the ongoing invasion.

This story was provided to Newsweek by Zenger News.