It comes as US officials claim they have evidence of a Russian plan to make a “very graphic” fake video of a Ukrainian attack as a “pretext” for an invasion, something Vladimir Putin denies
Russia has flexed its military muscle again by releasing an ominous show of strength in the snow of Siberia as fears of an invasion of Ukraine soar.
The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation released the footage as political tensions continues to rise.
It comes hours after US officials claim they have evidence of a Russian plot to make a “very graphic” fake video of a Ukrainian attack as a “pretext” for a forthcoming attack.
Russia yesterday condemned a US decision to deploy extra troops to Europe to support its allies, with Moscow saying it was a “destructive” step.
The Pentagon said 2,000 US troops would be sent from North Carolina to Poland and Germany, and a further 1,000 already in Germany would go to Romania.
Russia denies planning to invade and said in a statement accompanying the footage obtained by Newsflash: “Crews of the S-400 ‘Triumph’ anti-aircraft missile systems of the Central Military District air defense unit repelled a massive missile attack from a mock enemy in Siberia.
“The combat crews of the units of the S-400 ‘Triumph’ air defense system during the tactical exercise marched to a new positional area, where they completed a set of tasks to bring the systems into combat position.
“After that, they searched for and captured targets at a distance of up to 300km, and also performed electronic missile launches to destroy them.
“Having hit the ballistic missiles of a mock enemy, the crews of the S-400 ‘Triumph’ complexes performed an operational change of firing positions.
“In addition, during the exercise, combat crews worked out overcoming the contaminated area.
“About 500 military personnel participated in the combat training event, more than 40 units of military and special equipment were involved.”
The S-400 ‘Triumph’ is a mobile, surface-to-air missile system developed in the 1990s by the Almaz Central Design Bureau for Marine Engineering, headquartered in the Russian capital, Moscow.
Valued at £221 million per system, it was described as “one of the best air-defence systems currently made” by The Economist in 2017.
POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Footage of the military drill came just hours before US officials claimed Russia was planning a “very graphic” fake video as a pretext for invading the Ukraine.
The alleged plot would involve using corpses and footage of blown-up buildings.
“We don’t definitely know that this is the route they are going to take, but we know that this is an option under consideration,” the deputy national security adviser, Jonathan Finer, told MSNB, adding that the video “would involve actors playing mourners for people who are killed in an event that they would have created themselves”.
He added: “That would involve the deployment of corpses to represent bodies purportedly killed, of people purportedly killed in an incident like this.”