Ukraine claims to intercept three times as many projectiles as Russia actually launches, the Russian defense minister has said
Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu has refuted claims made by Ukrainian military officials about shooting down six Russian hypersonic Kinzhal missiles during overnight strikes on targets near the country’s capital city of Kiev.
Ukraine routinely exaggerates the effectiveness of its anti-aircraft defenses, primarily ‘intercepting’ incoming Russian munitions only with public statements, Shoigu told RIA Novosti.
“I have already said that, and I will repeat it again. We have not launched as many ‘Kinzhals’ as they allegedly shoot down every time with their statements. Moreover, the number of these ‘Ukrainian interceptions’ – and who really mans the American [anti-aircraft] complexes there, is still a big question – is three times as high as what we actually launch,” Shoigu stated.
The minister also said that Ukraine “always” misidentifies munitions used by Russia in its media statements. “That’s why they miss them,” he added, without providing any further information on the number of missiles used in the latest barrage.
Ukraine was subjected to a new massive missile and suicide drone barrage overnight, with the country’s capital city of Kiev seeing particularly intense activity by Ukrainian anti-aircraft defenses, footage circulating online suggests.
Moscow and Kiev have provided drastically different accounts of what happened overnight. Kiev claimed that it had shot down six state-of-the-art hypersonic missiles over the capital, as well as other incoming projectiles, using a battery of the US-made Patriot air defense system. The Russian military, however, said the battery was successfully hit by a Kinzhal missile. Footage available online shows multiple anti-aircraft missiles going towards an unseen target, with at least two explosions seen at the site from which they appeared to be launched.
Western media reports suggested the Patriot battery in question was likely damaged in the strike. According to CNN, citing an unidentified US official, Washington is currently assessing the extent of the damage in order to determine whether the Patriots need to be pulled back or whether on-site repairs by Ukrainian forces would be enough.