A Su-35 was reportedly used to launch a Kinzhal missile amid the conflict with Ukraine.
Russian forces successfully fired a hypersonic Kinzhal missile at a target in Ukraine from a Sukhoi Su-35 attack aircraft, a source told TASS. The Russian military only reported firing this weapon from its dedicated MiG-31K platform.
The deployment from a Su-35 took place in the context of the conflict with Ukraine, according to the source. The crew of the two-seater plane has been proposed for a military decoration, the newspaper added on Monday, without further details.
The Kinzhal is an air-launched quasi-ballistic missile, which experts say is derived from the ground-launched Iskander missile. It has been in service since 2017, with the specialized version of the MiG-31 supersonic interceptor serving as its platform.
The Russian Ministry of Defense reportedly plans to adapt some of its Tu-160 and Tu-22M3 long-range bombers to carry up to four Kinzhal each. A MiG-31K is armed with a single 4.3 ton round. Military experts have suggested that other Russian heavy combat aircraft could also be used as platforms for this weapon.
The Ministry of Defense last confirmed that a Kinzhal missile was launched in May, when it said it was used to destroy the radar station and launchers of a Patriot anti-aircraft system from American made in Kiev. The Ukrainian authorities then denied this information.
kyiv claims that the American weapon is capable of intercepting Russian hypersonic missiles and has done so on several occasions. The Ukrainian side said it detected Kinzhals’ arrival during a raid on kyiv in mid-August.
Military officials in Moscow said the number of interceptions claimed by Ukraine exceeded the number of missiles actually fired by the Russian side during the conflict.
In June, Aleksey Reznikov, then defense minister, complained in an interview that a visiting Chinese official would not take Ukrainian information about the shutdown of hypersonic missiles seriously.
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