Russia plans in 2010 to equip two additional military regiments with its S-400 Triumph air-defense system, Interfax reported yesterday (see GSN, Dec. 17, 2009).
"We plan to rearm two more regiments this year," said Russian air force chief of staff Lt. Gen. Vadim Volkovitsky. "They will be based, primarily, in the Moscow region," he said.
Missile and air-defense coverage for Moscow and its surrounding area "will soon come close to the efficiency requirements to ensure reliable protection of this government entity," Volkovitsky said (Interfax I, Feb. 17).
Russia could depend on S-400 defenses to form the backbone of a planned joint missile defense network covering Belarus and other members of the Commonwealth of Independent States, the general said (see GSN, April 10, 2009). Such a move would require "a political decision" by Moscow, he said.
The S-400 system is designed to hit enemy aircraft as well as short-range and medium-range ballistic and cruise missiles. S-400 interceptors can hit airborne targets at a distance of 150 miles and tactical ballistic missiles as far as 35 miles away, according to Interfax (Interfax II, Feb. 17).