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Ukraine tests locally made cruise missile amid conflict with Russian separatists

The missile is reportedly named Neptune, and could theoretically sink any of Russia’s landing ships or frigates

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 31 January, 2018, 2:23am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 31 January, 2018, 2:23am

Ukraine tested a locally made cruise missile capable of hitting land and sea targets from land on Tuesday, National Security and Defense Council Secretary Oleksandr Turchynov said.

Turchynov did not reveal the range of the missile, the first wholly made in Ukraine to be tested, but said it was in line with its international agreements.

Ukraine is battling Russian-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine in a conflict that erupted after Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014.

Kiev has committed to spending 5 per cent of the country’s gross domestic product on security and defence.

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“Successful flight tests of new missile weaponry, namely of a land-launched cruise missile, were held.

“Flight performance and performance of all systems of this new Ukrainian weaponry were checked during the tests,” Turchynov said.

The missile was not named by the authorities, but has been identified on the Defence Blog media outlet as the Neptune, based on the Soviet-designed Kh-35 introduced to the Russian military in 2003, the Kyiv Post reported.

According to the Kyiv Post, the missile can sink warships with displacements of up to 5,000 tons of water – which would include all of Russia’s landing ships and frigates.