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Russia Tests Short-Range Interceptor Missile

RIA Novosti

13:37 16/10/2012 MOSCOW, October 16 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's Aerospace Defense Force successfully tested a short-range anti-missile defense system on Tuesday, a Defense Ministry spokesman told RIA Novosti.

"The Aerospace Forces and defense industry successfully tested a Russian short-range interceptor missile at Sary-Shagan range at 12.01 p.m. on Tuesday, October 16," Col. Alexei Zolotukhin said.

The launch was carried out to confirm the effectiveness of interceptor missiles, deployed as part of the Russian A-135 (ABM-3) anti-ballistic missile network, and their performance specifications, he said.

"The anti-missile system test was successful and it succeeded in destroying a test target in the time set," Aerospace Forces Deputy Commander Lt. Gen. Valery Bratishenko said.

The Defense Ministry has not disclosed the type of missile involved in the testing.

The A-135 ABM network is deployed around Moscow to counter enemy missiles targeting the city or its surrounding areas. It became operational in 1995 and consists of the Don-2N battle management radar and two types of ABM missiles.

The short-range 53T6 (SH-08 'Gazelle') endoatmospheric interceptor missiles are deployed at five launch sites with 12 or 16 missiles each. These are tested roughly annually at the Sary Shagan test site.

The previous test of a 53T6 missile was carried out in December 2011.

The A-135 system is compliant with the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty from which the United States unilaterally withdrew in 2002.

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