MOSCOW, July 22 (RIA Novosti) – The Russian Army is using drones in its military exercises in the eastern regions of the country, a spokesman for the Eastern Military District said on Tuesday.
“A special-purpose training, involving an Eastern Military District unmanned air vehicle team, has started on Sakhalin Island today under the supervision of specialists from the unmanned aircraft division of the Defense Ministry of the Russian Federation," Col. Alexander Gordeev said.
The drones, named Forpost, Zastava, Grusha and Leer, will be used for examining the coastline and searching for ‘sunken ships’ during the drills.
The Eastern Military District is a strategic command of Russia’s Armed Forces covering the country’s Far East and a part of Siberia.
In May, Russian Deputy Defense Minister Yury Borisov said that reconnaissance and assault drones are in high demand today, and that the Russian military pays special attention to this area.
In the future, drones will be able to solve strategic military problems due to their stealth and greater combat stability compared to manned aircraft, Air Force Commander-in-Chief Lt. Gen. Viktor Bondarev said.
The Russian Defense Ministry said on May 20 that it would spend some $9.2 billion on unmanned air vehicles in the period to 2020, and that defense experts would train the country’s soldiers to operate the drones.