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“Shahed catcher”: Ukraine launches crowdfunder for systems to down Iranian kamikaze drones

Ukraine’s official fundraising platform U24, the Monobank bank, and volunteer Ihor Lachekov have launched an initiative to crowdfund UAH 100 mn ($2.7 mn) for two systems that will down Iranian Shahed-106 drones.

The kamikaze drones have been used by Russia since September to attack military, and, increasingly, civilian objects in Ukraine.

“Our goal is to raise UAH 100 million for the anti-drone system. We cannot disclose its manufacturer and name, but it will definitely help to detect and destroy enemy drones. Protect our critical infrastructure facilities from attacks. Such systems are in service with NATO countries,” Ukraine’s Minister of Digital Transformation Mykhailo Fedorov wrote.

As co-founder of Monobank Oleh Horokhovsky explained, such systems” blind” the Iranian drones, so they try to climb to a safe altitude, where they can be shot down by Ukrainian air defense systems. Two systems are planned to be purchased.

Crowdfunder participants have a chance to win a unique bracelet produced from the last batch of steel produced at Azovstal, the steelworks in Mariupol that became the last fortress of the Ukrainian troops defending the besieged city from Russian occupation. 1000 bracelets will be signed by Commander in Chief Valeriy Zalyzhnyi. 80 of the bracelets, which say “I trust in the Ukrainian Armed Forces,” are guaranteed to be gifted to persons making a donation of UAH 100,000 or higher.

Donations can be made through the Monobank platform. The crowdfunder will run until 15 October.

Valeriy Zaluzhnyi holds one of the bracelets. Photo: Oleh Horokhovskyi/ TG
“I trust in the Armed Forces of Ukraine” say the bracelets. Photo: Oleh Horokhovskyi/ TG
The bracelets are made from steel produced at Azovstal. Photo: Oleh Horokhovskyi/ TG

Update: Ukrainians reached the goal of UAH 100 mn ($2.7 mn) for the anti-Shahed systems in only 8 hours; the fundraiser continues, Ukraine’s Minister of Digital Transformation Fedorov posted.

Ukraine shot down 9 Iranian-made drones Shahed-136 last night, others hit Kharkiv

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