MOSCOW (AFP) – Russia used its newest Kinzhal hypersonic missiles for the first time in Ukraine on Friday to destroy a weapons storage site in the country’s west, the Defence Ministry said.
Russia has never before admitted using the high-precision weapon in combat, and state news agency RIA Novosti said it was the first use of the Kinzhal hypersonic weapons during the conflict in pro-Western Ukraine.
“The Kinzhal aviation missile system with hypersonic aeroballistic missiles destroyed a large underground warehouse containing missiles and aviation ammunition in the village of Deliatyn in the Ivano-Frankivsk region,” the Russian Defence Ministry said yesterday.
A Defence Ministry spokesman declined to comment when reached by AFP.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has termed the Kinzhal (dagger) missile “an ideal weapon” that flies at 10 times the speed of sound and can overcome air-defence systems. The Kinzhal missile was one of an array of new weapons Putin unveiled in his state-of-the-nation address in 2018.
Deliatyn, a village in the foothills of the picturesque Carpathian mountains, is located outside the city of Ivano-Frankivsk.
The region of Ivano-Frankivsk shares a 30-mile long border with Romania.