Kiev says that its US-made Patriot air defenses destroyed 6 Russian Kinjal hypersonic missiles at dawn on Tuesday over Kiev. Moscow, for its part, says the strikes hit their targets. So what really happened?
Ukraine announced on Tuesday that it had shot down a barrage of Russian missiles and that it had shot down six Russian Kinjal hypersonic missiles in a night attack launched by Moscow.
And if Kiev announced that it had destroyed all Russian missiles in the air, then Moscow, for its part, confirmed that the missiles “hit all its targets,” including points of “deployment of the Ukrainian armed forces” and Western ammunition and weapons stores.
“Another remarkable feat of the Ukrainian Air Force! Last night, the defenders of our skies shot down six Russian Kinjal hypersonic missiles and 12 more,” Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov wrote on Twitter.
According to the head of the Ukrainian General Staff Valeriy Zaluzhny, Russia attacked Ukraine “from the north, south and east” with Kinjal missiles, Kalibr cruise missiles, S-400 and Iskander missiles, as well as Iranian-made drones.
What are the Kinjal missiles?
Kinjal missiles are a type of weapon that Russian President Vladimir Putin describes as “invincible” because their hypersonic speed allows them to avoid most air defense systems.
The missiles belong to a new generation of missile weapons that Russia and other countries, most notably China, the United States, India, Germany and South Korea (and even its northern neighbor) have worked to develop in recent decades.
For the Kinjal, these missiles are often fired from MiG-31 launchers (as we can see in the video below).
Western officials have recently admitted that Russia and China’s programs in this field are more advanced than Western programs, and therefore the US military has allocated a large budget for developing this technology in the coming years.
And in March of last year, the US Defense Intelligence Agency (Military Intelligence Service) said that Chinese missiles of this type more developed than its Russian counterpart.
Russia used Kinjal missiles Since the outbreak of the conflict in Ukraine, but the Ukrainian army announced two days ago drop one of them In the sky of Kiev, which delighted the supporters of Ukraine. Russia, for its part, denied this.
Patriot vs Kingal
At night, international news agencies confirmed that the Ukrainian air defense systems in Kiev were working hard against Russian missiles. Later, an initial two-minute video went viral on social media showing these systems in action.
Russia supporters say in the video below that the Ukrainians fired about 30 Patriot missiles and yet they ultimately took two hits, destroying a Patriot battery.
Of course, Euronews cannot independently confirm these allegations.
account FighterBomber On Telegram, which is close to the Russian Air Force, he said that the video “documents the process of unloading two Patriot launchers of the 32 missiles that they can carry (16 each).”
What really happened and who is telling the truth?
Of course, there is a media war going on between Russia on the one hand, and Ukraine and behind it the West on the other hand, especially since the conflict started with the use of some of the latest equipment on both sides.
Mikael Waltersson, a former military, political and military expert in the Swedish army, says:The Ukrainians must have exaggerated But it may be that they shot down several missiles. The video appears to confirm Russian claims that at least one Patriot launcher was hit and destroyed.
Valtersson also wonders how many Patriot missiles the Ukrainian army received and says that the two-minute video is “very expensive”, especially since dozens of US missiles worth $160 million were launched in it.