[FPSPACE] AP: Report: Russian S-300 Missile Crashes
Wed, 20 Sep 2000 14:53:26 EDT
JimO: Is "Ashuluk" near Kapustin Yar?
Report: Russian S-300 Missile Crashes
By ANNA DOLGOV
MOSCOW (AP) - Russian officials on Wednesday confirmed the armed forces had
conducted tests of an anti-missile missile that would guard against
short-range rocket attacks, but would not comment on a report one of the
weapons had crashed into its launcher shortly after it was fired.
The daily Moskovsky Komsomolets said a Russian S-300 air-defense missile had
turned upside down but by ``fantastic luck'' had failed to explode after
crashing back into its launcher, which was just 200 yards from a launcher
containing another missile.
Officials at the Defense Ministry and Air Force on Wednesday confirmed that
the exercises had taken place, but did not confirm the report that a missile
The Ashuluk training grounds in the Astrakhan region, some 800 miles south of
Moscow, were cordoned off by troops after the accident, Moskovsky Komsomolets
said. The accident appeared to have been caused by the failure of the engine.
The ``Defense-2000'' exercises in the Astrakhan region last week were held to
practice shooting down tactical missiles, the daily Izvestia reported. The
S-300 is designed to defend specific targets - a much smaller system than the
nationwide anti-ballistic missile defense that the United States is working
Washington says its proposed system would serve to guard against threats from
countries such as North Korea and Iran. Moscow opposes the U.S. plan, saying
it would alter the balance of power that has helped prevent a nuclear
Vladimir Simonov, general director of the Russian Agency for Navigation
Systems, said several types of missiles were tested and the results would set
the course for future development.