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Bulava missile dangerous for Russia: Experts

Source : IANS
Last Updated: Tue, Feb 21, 2012 00:40 hrs

Moscow, Feb 21 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Russian experts have questioned how wise it was to adopt the troubled Bulava intercontinental missile for service, suggesting it would cause more security problems than it would solve.

According to the Kommersant daily, first deputy defence minister Alexander Sukhorukov said a presidential decree putting the missile into operation has been drafted and was ready to be signed.

However, military analyst Viktor Baranets said it was a "reckless" and "dangerous" move since the missile was underdeveloped.

"In its current form, the missile could be even more dangerous for the (Russian) navy than for an enemy navy," he said.

President Dmitry Medvedev said in December that flight tests for the Bulava submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) were completed and it will now be adopted for service with the navy.

Russia successfully test-launched two Bulava missiles in December.

Only 11 of 18 or 19 test launches of the troubled Bulava have been officially declared successful.

However, an analyst has suggested that in reality the number of failures was considerably higher.

Russian military expert Pavel Felgenhauer said that of the Bulava's first 12 test launches, only one was entirely successful.

Despite several previous failures officially blamed on manufacturing faults, the Russian military has insisted that there was no alternative to the Bulava.

The Bulava SLBM, developed by the Moscow Institute of Thermal Technology, carries up to 10 warheads and has a range of over 8,000 km. The missile is designed for deployment on Borey-class nuclear submarines.

--IANS/RIA Novosti

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