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Russia loads new intercontinental ballistic missile into silo in Kaluga Oblast

by Abbey Fenbert December 18, 2023 1:54 AM 2 min read
A Russian RS-24 Yars intercontinential missile ballistic system during the Victory Day Red Square Parade on May 9, 2023 in Moscow. (Contributor/Getty Images)
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Russian forces loaded a Yars intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) into a silo at the Kozelsk base in Kaluga Oblast, southwest of Moscow, the Russian Defense Ministry announced on Dec. 17.

The RS-24 Yars missile system carries multiple independently targetable re-entry vehicles (MIRV), enabling it to deliver several nuclear warheads to different targets.

"The Kozelsky unit of the Strategic Missile Forces carried out the loading of the Yars intercontinental ballistic missile into a silo launcher," the Defense Ministry said in a Telegram post, along with a clip set to rock music of the missile being transported and loaded.

"The Kozelsk missile unit is the first in the Strategic Missile Forces to be rearmed with the stationary-based Yars missile system."

The ministry also said that personnel in the missile unit conducted military exercises, including practicing countering mock sabotage and reconnaissance groups.

The Federation of American Scientists estimates that Russia has about 5,889 nuclear warheads in its stockpile, 1,674 of which are deployed and ready for use.

Russian dictator Vladimir Putin formally revoked the Russian Federation's ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) on Nov. 2.

Putin told Russian media on Dec. 17 that he has no plans to attack NATO countries, and that fears of a direct confrontation between Russia and NATO are "complete nonsense."

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