According to state-owned RIA Novosti, Deputy Defense Minister Yuriy Borisov confirmed the testing. The report states (translated from Russian):
“The defense ministry announced that the robotic Uran-6 complexes designed for mine clearance were well-proven in Syria, as well as Uran-9 multifunctional reconnaissance and fire support system.”
The Uran-6 has been widely discussed in operation in Syria in the past, but the use of the Uran-9 is a clear shift in the use of military robotics beyond the proving grounds. The Uran-9 was created to provide protective “cover fire” for human military personnel and is meant to go toe-to-toe with armored vehicles and tanks, as well as heavily fortified targets.
Several military observers, particularly those who have been looking for reports of the Uran-9’s use in Syria, have been frustrated by the Russian government’s secrecy behind the project. It’s unclear if the secrecy is related to the tank’s performance, or because Russia has been claiming to the United Nations that such robots don’t exist and therefore there is no reason to establish rules to govern them.
Full article: Russian Robo-Tanks Now Seen in Syria (TruNews)