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Ukraine keeps maintaining Russian ICBMs Satan despite ban on military ties

June 19, 2014, 8:34 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Earlier, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko ordered to halt military cooperation with Russia
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© ITAR-TASS/Sergei Kazak/Archive

MOSCOW, June 19. /ITAR-TASS/. Ukraine’s Dnipropetrovsk-based missile-developing design bureau Yuzhnoye does not stop maintenance of Russian intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) RS-20 Satan which are in service of the Russian Strategic Missile Troops, Izvestia daily reported on Thursday with the reference to a representative of the design bureau specialists.

Earlier, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko ordered to halt military cooperation with Russia. Meanwhile, the design bureau noted that the ban on military cooperation with Russia is possible only in case of a presidential decree to this effect that has not been issued yet.

“Our specialists went to Russia and keep visiting the country on different issues, primarily space rocket projects. If the president takes a decision and we are officially informed about it, then c-operation will be halted,” the source in Yuzhnoye design bureau said. Russian Defense Ministry does not have any information about the specific treaty being severed.

If this becomes reality after all, then, according to experts, “Russian enterprises have all opportunities for independent operations, and military forces have required documentation on missiles,” the daily reported.

Missile RS-20 Satan is considered the best strategic weapon in the world. The missile was developed at Dnipropetrovsk-based Yangel design bureau Yuzhnoye in 1973 and was brought into service of Soviet army in 1975. RS-20 can deliver up to ten warheads at a distance of more than 10,000 kilometers. Such reinforced facilities as silos and command posts are its targets.

Satan will be in military service until 2022, Chief Commander of Strategic Missile Troops Sergei Karakeyev said. This missile should be replaced with ground-based strategic missile systems Topol-M and Yars, as well as ICBM Bulava.

Maintenance of Russian missiles RS-20 should continue until 2017 under the contract between the Defense Ministry and the Yuzhmash factory, the daily recalled. According to experts’ estimates, Russia pays around $10 million annually to the Ukrainian enterprise for missile maintenance.

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