Russia tested its new anti-ballistic missile at the Sary-Shagan test site in Kazakhstan on Monday, April 26. Colonel Sergei Grabchuk, the commander of the Russian anti-missile defense system formation said that the missile can fly four times faster than a bullet.
"After a series of tests, the new ABM system has proved its characteristics and successfully completed the task, engaging the target with a given accuracy," he said.
Russian Anti-Ballistic Missile Test
The Ministry of Defense of Russia said that the missile was designed to protect Moscow from air and space attacks and will be used by the Russian Aerospace Forces, Newsweek reported.
Grabchuck said in an interview with the Russian state-run Ruptly that the new anti-ballistic missile could travel at speeds of about 1.9 miles per second (more than 3 kilometers per second).
That is a speed four times faster than the 0.43 miles per second (700 meters per second) velocity of a bullet fired from an AK-47 rifle.
Four months ago, Russia also launched their anti-satellite missile called the direct-ascent anti-satellite (DA-SAT) missile, which could destroy satellites in low-Earth orbit. According to Space.com, this is the third anti-satellite that Russia tested in 2020.
Once a satellite is struck by the DA-SAT, it could leave debris that could pose a serious threat to other satellites and irrevocably pollute the space, the US Space Command said.
Space: The Next Battlefield
According to a press release from United States Space Command, U.S. Army Gen. James Dickinson, commander of the USSC said that although Russia has claimed it is not transforming space, it continues to create and develop weapons both for on-orbit and ground capabilities that seek to exploit the US which relies on space-based systems.
Moreover, Gen. Dickinson said in a hearing before the Armed Services Committee last week that Russia's recent weapon testing suggests that the country has no intention of halting developing its space weapons systems.
In a Twitter post, the USSC has expressed its concerns on the continuous movements of Russia weaponizing space, contrary to their claims of not transforming space as the new battlefield. Dickinson said that space is critical to the whole planet because everyone has a shared interest to create conditions for a safe, stable, and operationally sustainable space environment.
Tensions continue to grow between Russia and other countries, particularly the US and Ukraine. Last week, the Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu withdrew troops from the border of Ukraine after a massive buildup of the military that raised concerns from NATO and the US, Newsweek reported.
In an interview with the Russian state television, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that the current tensions building between the US and Russia is worse than during the Cold War.
"During the Cold War, the tensions were flying high and risky crisis situations often emerged, but there was also a mutual respect," Lavrov said. "It seems to me there is a deficit of it now."
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