NEW YORK, November 10. /TASS/. The Biden administration has decided against handing its Gray Eagle MQ-1C drones over to Kiev, fearing that it could further escalate the conflict in Ukraine, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday, citing sources.
According to the newspaper, the administration of US President Joe Biden "won’t give Ukraine advanced drones despite pleas" from Kiev and members of both parties in Congress. The newspaper pointed out that the Pentagon refused to supply Kiev with the UAVs in question "on concerns that providing the Gray Eagle MQ-1C drones could escalate the conflict and signal to Moscow that the US was providing weapons that could target positions inside Russia".
In addition, the newspaper stated that the US administration had expressed concerns that in the course of combat operations, the technology of this drone may be stolen, namely, the cameras used in this model. As the Wall Street Journal notes, this may be the main reason why the US is shying away from supplying these UAVs to Ukraine.
In September, the Wall Street Journal reported that a group of US congressmen addressed US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin with a request to provide Ukraine with modern drones, including the MQ-1C Gray Eagle. The newspaper pointed out that Washington was skeptical about sending advanced drones to Kiev over fears of escalating tensions with Russia.
On February 24, Russian President Vladimir Putin launched a special military operation in Ukraine following a request for assistance from the leaders of the Donbass republics. After that, the US, the EU, the UK, as well as a number of other countries imposed sanctions against Russian individuals and legal entities. In addition, Western countries began to persistently supply arms and military equipment to Kiev worth billions of dollars.