Ukraine says Russia deploys Iskander-M launchers near border

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9М723 missiles, part of Iskander-M missile complex, are seen during a demonstration at the International military-technical forum ARMY-2019 at Alabino range in Moscow Region, Russia June 25, 2019. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov/File Photo

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April 24 (Reuters) - Russia has deployed Iskander-M mobile battlefield missile launchers within 60 km (40 miles) of the Ukrainian border, General Staff of Ukraine's Armed Forces said on Sunday.

"Then enemy has increased the number of troops in the Belgorod region by transferring and concentrating additional units," the Ukrainian Armed Forces said in its daily morning update.

"According to available information, Iskander-M launchers have been deployed 60 km from the border with Ukraine," it said, without providing more detail on the location of the systems.

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Reuters could not immediately to verify the reports. There was no immediate reaction from Moscow to the reports.

Belgorod is a city and the administrative centre of Russia's Belgorod region, north of the border with Ukraine.

The Iskander, a mobile ballistic missile system codenamed SS-26 Stone by NATO, replaced the Soviet Scud missile. Its two guided missiles have a range of up to 500 km (300 miles) and can carry conventional or nuclear warheads.

Russia said on Friday it wanted to control all of southern Ukraine. Kyiv said this showed Moscow had wider goals than its declared aim of demilitarising and "denazifying" the country. Ukraine and the West call the invasion, now in its third month, an unjustified war of aggression. read more

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Reporting by Lidia Kelly in Melbourne; Editing by William Mallard

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