The US Patriot anti-aircraft missile system cannot shoot down the Russian Kinzhal hypersonic missile due to its technical characteristics, a senior source in the Russian Ministry of Defense (MoD) said, state media Ria Novosti reported.
“The flight speed of the Kinzhal missile exceeds the maximum combat modes of anti-aircraft missile systems supplied by the West to the Kyiv regime, including the Patriot,” the source told Ria.
The source added, in the final phase of the flight, the Kinzhal performs an anti-missile maneuver and an almost vertical approach to the target, which excludes the possibility of it being intercepted by anti-aircraft missile systems.
He called the statements about the downed hypersonic missile a hoax and called it wishful thinking. However, there is still no official statement from the Russian government.
Earlier, a Russian military expert told local Russian media that it was impossible to shoot down a hypersonic missile with a Patriot system. “You can’t hit a target that’s flying faster. That’s if you shoot it down on a head-on course. If you shoot down on a head-on course, the interceptor missile should fly 1.5 times faster than the “Dagger.”
Earlier, the head of the press service of the Pentagon, Patrick Ryder, said at a briefing that Ukraine allegedly shot down a Russian Kinzhal missile with the help of the Patriot missile defense system transferred to it.
Ukraine’s MoD also confirmed the downing of Russia’s Kinzhal missile over Kyiv. In a tweet, the MoD said: @KpsZSU (Ukraine Air Force) confirms that Ukraine’s air defenders shot down Kinzhal, a hypersonic aeroballistic Russian missile, for the first time since the attacks began. This was done by operators of the Patriot air defense system.
Meanwhile, Russia’s military activity on the border with Finland has remained at the same level as before Finland’s accession to NATO, Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto said on Thursday.
“After we applied for NATO membership last spring, we expected all sorts of provocations from Russia. But nothing happened. Russia’s military activities at the border with Finland have not been significantly intensified,” he said in an interview with the French newspaper Ouest France and German media group Funke.
The minister added that in the future, Finland expects to participate in the monitoring of NATO’s airspace.
“We have been conducting joint military exercises with NATO countries, including the US, for a long time.
The training also took place in the spring and summer. At this point, we are not talking about establishing a permanent NATO military base in Finland or deploying foreign troops on a rota basis. However, we expect to participate in the monitoring of NATO’s airspace over the Baltic states in the future,” he said.
Haavisto pointed out that Finland has “a strong professional army plus 300,000 reservists,” adding that the country’s goal is to “be able to defend itself on its own.”
Finland and Sweden submitted bids for NATO membership in May 2022, several months after Russia launched a military operation in Ukraine. On March 31, Finland’s application was ratified by all 30 members of the alliance. Sweden’s bid is still pending approval by Hungary and Turkey.
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