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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Russian bombers to fire live missiles in Siberia drills

RIA Novosti

22/07/2008 17:58 MOSCOW, July 22 (RIA Novosti) - Five Russian Tu-22 Blinder bombers will fire live missiles at a test range in East Siberia's Irkutsk Region during tactical exercises starting on Wednesday, the Air Force said on Tuesday.

Spokesman Lt. Col. Vladimir Drik said the three-man crews will receive training in combat flight theory and enhance their aviation weaponry skills.

"The exercises will last until July 25, and five Tu-22 aircraft will take part in them. The bomber crews will also master interoperability with other Air Force branches and Air Defense units," he said.

The Tu-22 supersonic bomber was designed by the Tupolev aerospace and defense company and entered service in the Soviet Air Force in 1962. The jet has been used by the air forces of several countries including Libya and Iraq.

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