Social media has been flooded with images and videos of Ukrainian soldiers employing a British-made Martlet man portable air defence system (MANPADS) to shoot down a Russian drone.
A soldier is seen shooting a missile, followed by cheering from his teammates, while an explosion is heard in the background, in a video released on several social media channels linked with the Ukrainian military.
The men are from the 95th Air Assault Brigade, according to the video description. The weapon system was mistakenly identified as a Starstreak, although it was actually a Martlet missile, which uses the same launch tube as the Starstreak.
UK Defense Secretary Ben Wallace revealed in mid-March 2022 that the UK will supply Ukraine with Starstreak MANPADS, with the first systems expected to arrive by the end of the month.
The first footage of Starstreak allegedly shooting down a Russian Mil Mi-28 assault helicopter surfaced on social media on April 2.
“To Boris Johnson, this is a greeting from Ukrainian paratroopers.” Thank you, United Kingdom. Our allies’ assistance is being put to good use; please send more.
The description reads, “For our freedom and yours!”
Martlet’s emergence demonstrates that the diversity of weapons transferred to Ukraine by European countries is more than previously stated.
In terms of size and capability, the Orion is similar to the General Atomics MQ-1 Predator, and it can carry a variety of guided bombs and missiles.
Several videos circulated on Russian social media purporting to show the Orion demolishing Ukrainian vehicles and bunkers.
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