May 15, 2018 / 9:00 PM / 7 months ago

Putin says Russia's defense industry to get new Yars missile complexes in 2018

Russian President Vladimir Putin (C) delivers a speech during a ceremony opening a bridge, which was constructed to connect the Russian mainland with the Crimean Peninsula across the Kerch Strait, Crimea May 15, 2018. Alexander Nemenov/Pool via REUTERS

SOCHI, Russia (Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday that 14 missile regiments would receive the new Yars intercontinental missile complexes to replace their old Topol complexes this year as part of a build-up of the state’s armed forces.

Putin, whose relations with the West have deteriorated, said previously he does not want an arms race, while warning potential enemies that his country has developed a new generation of invincible weapons to protect itself.

At a meeting with defense ministry officials in the Black Sea city of Sochi on Tuesday, Putin added that the national defense industry would also receive modernized missile-carrying bombers in 2018.

“In the course of the year, the air part of a nuclear triad will receive modernized missile-carrying bombers TU-95MS and TU-160 armed with modern cruise long-range missiles Kh-101 and Kh-102,” he said.

He also told officials that the defense sector should finish the development and prepare for manufacturing the S-500 surface-to-air anti-ballistic missile system capable of intercepting targets at the highest altitudes including near space.

Reporting by Denis Pinchuk; writing by Denis Pinchuk and Polina Devitt; editing by Hugh Lawson

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