Russia Nuclear Iskander missile systems in Kaliningrad

http://news.err.ee/v/news/2bed3823-08be-4918-be4c-4e427422981e/russia-transporting-iskander-missile-system-to-kaliningrad

According to a government source known to ERR’s Estonian news portal, the Russian Baltic Fleet is moving an Iskander-M missile system from Ust-Luga to Kaliningrad on a civilian vessel. The ship, called the Ambal, is currently at sea moving towards Kaliningrad, where it is expected to arrive today Friday.

The possibility exists that the violation of Estonian airspace by a Russian military plane on Thursday is connected to the move.

Asked by ERR’s Estonian news portal if he could confirm, Minister of Defence Hannes Hanso (SDE) said that they had their own channels to answer such questions. “But it’s certainly true that we have reason to keep our eyes open in the air, on the water, and everywhere else,” Hanso said.

Asked if the airspace violations that occurred in Finland and Estonia on Thursday and Friday could be connected to Russia’s move, Hanso said that this possibility couldn’t be excluded.

Iskander-M is a ballistic rocket system designed to destroy strategic targets in a distance of 500 to 700 kilometers.

In 2010 and 2011 the Russian 26. missile brigade around Lake Peipus was equipped with rockets of this type (12 positions in total). According to magazine Diplomaatia, it is likely that the Iskander system was introduced to the 152. missile brigade stationed in Kaliningrad in 2012 and 2013.

The Iskander system is intended for the destruction of strategically important objects, such as airfields, ports, railroad junctions, military headquarters, and so on. From Kaliningrad, the range of the system reaches from southern Poland to central Finland.

The Amal in Ust-Luga

The Ambal in the Port of Ust-Luga

Airspace violations in Finland and Estonia on Thursday and Friday

A Russian Su-27 fighter jet violated Finnish airspace at 4:43 p.m. on Thursday, and again at 9:33 p.m., the Finnish defense ministry reported.

A plane of the same type violated Estonian airspace close to the island of Vaindloo in the Gulf of Finland at 2:38 a.m. on Friday. The jet was on Estonian territory for less than a minute, the Estonian Defence Forces reported. A flight plan had not been filed, and the plane’s transponder was not active.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs summoned the Russian ambassador on Friday to hand over a protest note.

Under the guise of logistical exercises of the Baltic fleet moving from Ust-Luga to Kaliningrad region operational-tactical missile complex “Iskander”. On Friday, October 7, reported the news portal ERR.ee citing an informed source.

For the transportation of used automobile-railway ferry “Kingpin”, which is now moving in the Baltic sea and must on Friday to arrive to Kaliningrad.
It is not excluded that the transport of “Iskander” related and yesterday’s violations of the airspace of Estonia and Finland Russian fighters.

Hanso: there’s a reason to be extremely vigilant

The Minister of defence of Estonia Hannes Hanso has not confirmed nor denied transportation “Iskander”. To answer such questions has its own channels of information, said the Minister in response to the question “ERR”. “But it is also true that we have reason to be very vigilant in the air and at sea, and in all other places,” added Hanso.
He also did not rule out a connection between violations of the airspace and transportation of the missile complex. “I can’t exclude – it can say,” – said the Minister of defence.

Terraces: Russia wants to tighten control over the Baltic sea

According to the commander of the defence Forces, Lieutenant General Riho terrace, the recent actions of Russia speaks of its desire to establish tighter control over the Baltic sea. “Russia’s desire in the long term – more to strengthen its control over the Baltic sea and the path to it, controlling it, such as the Black sea,” said Terraces.
In his opinion, violations of the airspace of Estonia and Finland, and also transfer of the complex “Iskander” in Kaliningrad – it is a demonstration of his desire for NATO.
Terraces also linked the latest developments with the recent statements of the President of Russia Vladimir Putin, calling Russia’s behavior in the Baltic sea region provocative.

Of the complex “Iskander”

Operational-tactical missile complex “Iskander” was adopted by the Russian army in 2006. It is designed to engage targets with great accuracy at ranges from 50 to 500 km (some 700 km).
In 2010-2011, the complexes “Iskander” was rearmed with 26 missile brigade, stationed in the area of lake Peipsi (12 launchers). There were reports that the “Iskander” systems have also been deployed in Kaliningrad, but official confirmation of this information yet was not. This missile system has enabled Russia to strike from Kaliningrad practically all important strategic facilities (airports, ports, railway hubs, control centers, etc.) from southern Poland to Central Finland.
Re all missile brigades of the Russian army on the complexes “Iskander” should be completed in 2018.

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