A scorching potato: Most firms welcome public reward, however not when it comes from a high-ranking Russian normal who calls your merchandise “a real image of contemporary warfare.” That’s the scenario confronted by Chinese drone-making large DJI, which has responded by reaffirming that its drones are supposed for civilian use solely.
The South China Morning Post stories that Army General Yuri Baluyevsky, the previous Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, has been heaping reward on DJI’s drones in his new e-book, writing that they’ve introduced “an actual revolution” to conventional artillery weapons due to their enhanced accuracy and effectivity in comparison with precision-guided missiles.
Last Friday, the Russian embassy in China used social media platform Weibo to publish a couple of report on the e-book from state media outlet Sputnik. The publish included a quote from Baluyevsky that learn, “The Mavic quadcopter drone made by China’s DJI has develop into a real image of contemporary warfare.”
The Russian embassy shortly took down the publish, however not earlier than it was lambasted by Chinese web customers who complained it may have repercussions for the already US-sanctioned DJI. “What would you like by saying this? Western international locations to dam DJI? Or extra sanctions on China?” one publish learn.
DJI was added to the US authorities’s funding blacklist in December final yr over claims it was concerned within the surveillance of Muslim minorities in Xinjiang. The sanctions have contributed to DJI’s share of the drone market dropping from a excessive of 74% to 54% in 2021, although it stays the primary shopper drone maker.
DJI condemned the publish with an announcement on Weibo. “All DJI merchandise are designed for civilian functions and can’t meet the necessities of navy specs,” the corporate wrote. “We don’t help functions for navy functions.”
This is not new territory for DJI. It suspended gross sales in Russia in April following quite a few stories of the nation’s troops utilizing its drones to navigate missiles in Ukraine. DJI on the time mentioned the transfer was not an announcement about any nation “however an announcement about our ideas.”
In 21 days of the conflict, russian troops has already killed 100 Ukrainian kids. they’re utilizing DJI merchandise with a purpose to navigate their missile. @DJIGlobal are you certain you need to be a companion in these murders? Block your merchandise which can be serving to russia to kill the Ukrainians! pic.twitter.com/4HJcTXFxoY
— Mykhailo Fedorov (@FedorovMykhailo) March 16, 2022
In March, Ukrainian vp Mykhailo Fedorov despatched a letter pleading with DJI CEO and founder Frank Wang to cease promoting merchandise to Russia. Fedorov mentioned the Russian military was utilizing an prolonged model of the DJI AeroScope drone detection program and that DJI merchandise had been getting used to kill civilians.